Goodman: Celtics Fans "Done" With Kyrie

Most of Boston would be "happy" if Kyrie Irving signed elsewhere, Jeff Goodman says

Reiter Than You
June 13, 2019 - 10:54 am
Kyrie Irving Boston Celtics NBA Playoffs

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Kyrie Irving has reportedly parted ways with agent Jeff Wechsler and is eyeing Jay-Z’s Roc Nation Sports ahead of free agency June 30. Jay-Z, of course, is a former part-owner of the Brooklyn Nets.

At this point, it appears unlikely that Irving will return to the Celtics. The city of Boston might be OK with that.

“I think most of Boston would be happy if Kyrie left and went to New York, whether it’s Brooklyn or the Knicks,” Stadium analyst Jeff Goodman said on Reiter Than You. “They’re done with him. Those people are done with him. They feel like this team was unlikeable, unwatchable with Kyrie, and they were way more fun to watch two years ago when Kyrie wasn’t taking the air out of the locker room and taking the air out of the Garden.”

Without Irving in 2017-18, the Celtics came within one game of the NBA Finals. With him in 2018-19, they feuded for much of the season and lost to Milwaukee in the conference semifinals in five games.

Even Danny Ainge has mixed feelings on Irving.

“I think he’s torn,” Goodman said. “Danny Ainge is a guy that, ultimately, talent usually wins out. He doesn’t generally worry about red flags. I remember (in 2011) he decided to go the route of the clean-cut guys and he drafted E'Twaun Moore and JaJuan Johnson – both Purdue guys – and it turned out to be a train wreck. I’m like, ‘He’s never doing that again.’ Danny Ainge is one (who thinks) talent trumps all.”

Ainge knows that there are few great players in the league – and even fewer great players who are great leaders. But Irving is different.

“I think there’s a part of (Ainge) that says, ‘I’m done with this guy,’” Goodman said. “Brad Stevens, from what I had sources tell me, had a hard time dealing with Kyrie Irving. Brad Stevens has a hard time dealing with nobody. That dude gets alone with everybody.”

It seems a lot of Celtics had problems seeing eye-to-eye with Irving.

“The problem with Kyrie Irving – and I’ve said it for years – is he feels like he’s smarter than everybody else,” Goodman said. “He is smart. He can be a really, really smart basketball player at times. But there are also times when it’s all about Kyrie and he doesn’t know how to make anybody else better. He doesn’t understand that you need to get Gordon Hayward his confidence back. You need to make sure Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown are happy. That’s part of the job as the leader and the point guard. But I felt like too many nights Kyrie was all about himself.”

Click below to listen to Goodman’s interview in its entirety.

Reiter Than You 06-12-19 Hour 4

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