NBA Hall of Famer and Turner Sports analyst Charles Barkley doesn’t understand why Kyrie Irving would want to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James for a bigger role elsewhere.
“You want to be on a good team. You want to play with other great players. This notion where you want to be the man, I just think is so stupid,” he said during an interview on NBA TV. “If I got a chance to play with another great player, I want to do that. The objective is to win.”
“When he was on a bad team and he was the man, I guarantee you that wasn’t a lot of fun for him,” he continued. “And now you want to leave the best player in the world. And listen, I hear all of this stuff about how LeBron casts a big shadow. He should cast a big shadow.”
As Barkley noted, playing with any great player—he cited Michael Jordan, Larry Bird and Shaquille O’Neal—means living under their proverbial shadow. But that’s the price for giving yourself a chance to win championships.
“If you get a chance to play with great players, that’s half the battle,” Barkley noted.
Jimmy Butler (Knee) Sits Out T-Wolves Win Over Raptors
Jimmy Butler sat out Minnesota’s 115-109 victory Saturday night against Toronto with a sore right knee.
Butler is averaging 21.7 points per game for the revamped Timberwolves, who entered with the fourth-best record in the Western Conference. Minnesota had lost two straight before hosting the Raptors. Nemanja Bjelica started in Butler’s place.
Celtics’ Kyrie Irving Set to Return From Shoulder Injury
Boston Celtics All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving went through the team’s entire off-day practice Saturday and expects to return to game action Sunday against the Orlando Magic after missing one game due to a sore shoulder.
Irving sat out Thursday’s loss to the Philadelphia 76ers after undergoing tests on a shoulder that had been bothering him recently. An MRI revealed no structural damage, but Irving will continue getting treatment even as he returns to game action.
Source: Chris Forsberg of ESPN
LeBron After Loss to OKC: We Can Get Bounced Early in Playoffs
Following one of the most inept defensive performances in Cavaliers history, LeBron James said his team looked primed for a short postseason appearance, barring any changes.
The Cavs fell 148-124 to the Oklahoma City Thunder on Saturday, tying a franchise record for most points allowed in regulation. They are 3-9 since Christmas Day. “Playoffs? We can’t even start thinking about that, not the way we’re playing right now,” James said. “We could easily get bounced early in the playoffs if they started next weekend. Haven’t even began thinking about the postseason.”
Source: Dave McMenamin of ESPN