Kyrie Irving
Kyrie Irving #11 of the Boston Celtics looks on during the second quarter against the Washington Wizards at TD Garden in Boston, March 1, 2019. Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Kyrie Irving is not making any friends and has been getting criticized for his demeanor as the Boston Celtics go through one of their worst spells of the season, having lost five of their last six since the All-Star break. He has also been unreceptive toward the media for their speculation about his future and the Celtics’ poor form.

The Boston franchise was dubbed the favorites to progress from the Eastern Conference before the season got underway, but their campaign has been a far cry from the predictions, with them currently in 5th place with 18 games remaining until the end of regular season.

Irving had committed his long-term future to the Celtics prior to the start of the season but has since backtracked on his commitment. He is now expected to leave when he enters free agency in the summer, with many predicting a potential move to the New York Knicks or the Los Angeles Lakers to reunite with former teammate LeBron James.

The Celtics point guard left Cleveland Cavaliers to get away from under James’ shadow and lead a team of his own and despite showing signs of that, he has cut a frustrated figure of late, with the team unable to put together a consistent run of wins. He has hit out at the media in recent weeks and despite insisting the Celtics would be difficult to beat in the playoffs, the team has looked better without Irving on many occasions - they have now lost seven of their last eight with him in the lineup.

Irving’s recent struggles have seen NBA expert Robin Lundberg conclude that the six-time All-Star is not like James, who can lead a team and get them wins singlehandedly. He insists that the Celtics star should not have left the Cavaliers as he is not star player material, but just the second guy.

“Clearly Kyrie Irving wants to be the star,” Lundberg said, as quoted by the Express. “But I do not think that he is good enough unless he’s the second guy.”

"That’s his set up, that’s his skill set. No matter how many phone calls he makes to LeBron James, no matter how many ticked-off press conferences he gives after games. In fact, he should have stayed with LeBron James. That would have saved us a lot of unnecessary drama if they stayed together,” he added. “The question I have for him is - is there any situation that would actually make him happy?”

The Celtics’ most recent loss came against the Houston Rockets on Sunday night, when they went down 115-104 with James Harden scoring 42 points. Irving was pretty unresponsive towards the media after the loss, stating just that the Celtics simply “have to play better”. The Boston franchise’s next game is against the reigning back-to-back champions Golden State Warriors – the first of their four-game road trip which will also see them visit Sacramento and Los Angeles where they will take on both the Lakers and the Clippers.