KEY POINTS

  • Irving return to Nets lineup still unknown
  • Report claims Irving ready to sit out season
  • Irving holdout may wear down Nets patience

The Brooklyn Nets may have hooked in a big fish in James Harden, officially making them a super team on paper.

The reason behind this is that head coach Steven Nash is still missing a key piece in Kyrie Irving who remains out due to personal reasons. The 28-year-old will miss his fourth game when the Nets face the New York Knicks.

Irving is currently under fire after viral videos circulated of him partying with his sister without a face mask. Investigations are underway and even if “Uncle Drew” returns, he will have to undergo quarantine before he can rejoin–that is if he has any plans.

In an update provided by Jason Dumas of Kron4News, an Irving return is not expected to happen anytime soon. Though the Nets have been lenient on the case of the former NBA champion, the latest report, if true, is disturbing for Brooklyn.

According to the report of Dumas, Irving is ready to sit out the year if needed. Hence, the Harden trade somehow eases the burden for the Nets who now have an undermanned roster after dealing away Caris LeVert, Jarrett Allen, Taurean Prince and Rodon Kurucs in the blockbuster trade with Houston that also involved the Indiana Pacers and the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The only thing certain now is that the Nets will have Durant and Harden the rest of the way. Both are no strangers to each other as they started their NBA careers with the Oklahoma City Thunder and should have no trouble blending in.

Aside from that, Harden also reunites with former Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni, someone who knows how to utilize the 2018 NBA MVP.

There is no telling if the addition of Harden can make up for the absence of Irving. The same holds on whether the Nets can go all the way and win the NBA title.

But assuming they do and he continues to hold out, it raises questions on Irving’s future.

Brooklyn has shown extreme patience on Irving, but if the Nets progress, that could grow thin. Irving is unlikely to care about it for now with his personal reasons remaining a mystery.

The Nets have three open roster spots and are likely to add someone soon. They could use a minimum exception and possibly a $5.7 million disabled player exception to fill up their manpower void, ESPN reported.

But the question now is who do they consider taking in?

Kyrie Irving Brooklyn Nets Kyrie Irving #11 of the Brooklyn Nets calls a play during the second half against the Washington Wizards at Barclays Center on January 03, 2021 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. Photo: Sarah Stier/Getty Images