LeBron James sent a cryptic three-word tweet after a touted reunion with Kyrie Irving at the LA Lakers fell through.
Irving, 30, sent shockwaves through the NBA world when he requested a blockbuster trade after failing to agree a contract extension with the Brooklyn Nets. The eight-time NBA All-star dropped the bombshell on Friday as he confirmed he wanted to leave the Nets before the trade deadline on February 9.
And the Lakers were one of three teams strongly linked with a move for Irving, which would have seen James team up with the point guard once again at the iconic franchise. Irving spent three seasons with James at the Cleveland Cavaliers and won his only NBA title alongside the superstar veteran in 2016.
And James had been unequivocal in his response when asked if Irving would enhance the Lakers' chances of winning an NBA title after he requested a trade.
"Obviously, that's a – what's the word you use – 'duh' question when you talk about a player like that," he said. But any hopes NBA fans had of an exciting Irving-James reunion are over after the Nets traded the star player to the Dallas Mavericks instead.
Irving is now set to join another NBA All-Star in Luka Doncic at the Mavericks in the Western Conference after ending a tumultuous spell in Brooklyn. And following the news of Irving's expected trade, James tweeted: "Maybe it's me."
It was unclear if the 38-year-old was specifically referring to a Lakers snub from Irving, but the timing had fans talking as his brief message came just after the Mavericks move was reported.
Irving's time at the Nets had been filled with controversy. He suffered various injury problems, but also missed a huge number of games due to his refusal to be vaccinated against Covid-19.
And he was also suspended by the franchise last year for sharing an antisemitic film on social media and initially failing to apologise for his actions.
James, meanwhile, has edged closer to creating history and breaking the NBA career scoring record. He is now just Kareem 36 points away from Abdul-Jabbar’s record total of 38,387 points after a 27-point haul in the Lakers defeat to New Orleans Pelicans on Saturday.