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Sources: Kyrie Irving Threatened to Sit Out 2017 Season if Cleveland Didn’t Trade Him

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[Kyrie] Irving’s desire and request to leave the Cavs last summer are well documented. Wanting to leave LeBron James’ shadow and the culture James dominated in Cleveland, upset that former general manager David Griffin was gone and miffed that the Cavs considered trading him to Indiana for Paul George, Irving asked owner Dan Gilbert to trade him.

Gilbert didn’t have to honor the request, though, as Irving had two years left on his contract. But according to multiple sources, Irving threatened to sit out the season and have surgery on his knee, convincing Gilbert and Cleveland’s front office that the relationship was not salvageable.

Irving’s agent, Jeff Wechsler, declined to discuss what was said to the Cavs with cleveland.com, and Gilbert did not personally respond to a request seeking comment.

The Cavs do not regret trading Irving (because he didn’t want to be here) nor do they regret trading him to Boston, and are otherwise refusing to address the past as they try to maximize this season and the future, they said.

Source: Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com

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Sources: Suns, Austin Rivers Agree to Part Ways

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After trade with Wizards, Suns agree to part ways with G Austin Rivers, per ESPN sources. Rivers – earning $12.6M in final year of deal – becomes a free agent upon clearing waivers. As a veteran, sides concluded Rivers fits better on an older team that’s pursuing playoffs.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

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Sources: Jazz Interested in Jabari Parker

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The Utah Jazz are one of the teams interested in Parker, according to multiple league sources. Derrick Favors is an awkward fit next to center Rudy Gobert, and his $16.9 million on the books for next season is non-guaranteed, meaning he could be one of the pieces involved. Favors can’t be traded until January 15, so Chicago would have to wait. Would it be worth it? The Bulls are loaded with young bigs, so it’s hard to see them taking back Favors unless additional assets are included. Utah has all of its future picks, except for a 2020 second-rounder going to the Cavaliers, and has two other seconds incoming.

Source: Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer

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Sources: Thunder Pick Up Option on Head Coach Billy Donavan

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The Oklahoma City Thunder has picked up option on Coach Billy Donovan’s contract for the 2019-20 season, the fifth year on his original deal, league source tells ESPN. Donovan is the fourth winningest coach with same team over his four years, behind Kerr, Popovich and Stevens.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

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