Ahh, I can’t wait. I know this is the type of blog that some of you will be triggered by… “why do you still care about him?” or “Just move on already!” or “Wow Kyrie is in Celtics fans’ heads still…”
First off, let’s make it clear that the “Remember When” series is simply a time in which we can look back and reflect on some Celtics moments. Some for the better and some for the worse… That is what we are doing here. With Kyrie Irving making a stink in the media lately, I figured it was time to whip out one of those ‘for the worse’ memories.
Remember when Kyrie Irving chewed out Gordon Hayward at the end of the game in Orlando back in 2019? Yeah… me too. If you don’t remember, here is a clip:
With just under 3 seconds left on the clock, Gordon Hayward decided to pass the ball to Jayson Tatum… instead of Kyrie. In my opinion, this was a fine play and a safe pass. I mean… watch that back… Kyrie literally wasn’t even making a play for the ball and it didn’t appear that Horford was coming up to set a pick for him.
The only thing I could potentially see that was supposed to happen was the inbound going into Al and Kyrie coming in for a handoff. Fine. If that was the play then Hayward should’ve let it develop. However, it is not like he just chucked it in and turned the ball over. He found Tatum, who had sealed off his man, allowing a clean and safe inbounds pass. Which I would bet was one of the looks that Brad Stevens called out prior to. Funny thing is this exact play was run earlier this season and worked to perfection… so how can you blame Hayward for passing the rock just a season ago?
Here it is:
Either way, whether Hayward made the correct pass or refused to let the play develop, I don’t see how Kyrie’s actions can be justified… you are supposed to be a leader. THE leader. In this case, you have a guy coming off a traumatic injury passing to your team’s brightest young star. Chewing them out for the “misstep” (if we can even call it that) is not the correct way to go about this. ESPECIALLY on the court in front of tens of thousands of live fans and many more watching on TV. This was just one of those examples of Kyrie making something about himself and thinking he knows better than everyone in the room. I mean, look at the image atop this post… Even Brad Stevens is trying to simmer him down.
Again, I only think back to this and reflect on it now due to the fact that he is in full-force trying to stop the NBA from coming back. This guy, who isn’t even going to be playing, has to somehow/someway make it all about him and make sure his nose is right in the think of things…
(Photo: WEEI – Radio.com)