Kyrie Irving’s trade request in the summer of ‘17 caught most people by surprise, and most people assumed the reason was to get out from under LeBron James.
Of course, that mainly means to be considered the leader of his own team, but you have to wonder if the way the team operates ever rubbed Irving the wrong way. Last night against the Toronto Raptors, there was a familiar scene of LeBron getting extremely frustrated when his team was losing. This is not a unique feature in an athlete, but because of his power in the league, he’s able to take out that frustration in a more animated way.
Take a look for yourself.
Now take a look at who seemed to enjoy the turmoil in the Cavs huddle.
Kyrie vs. LeBron might be the story of this season, but the Raptors have literally put themselves right in the middle of it.
On the back of DeMar DeRozan’s transformative season, the Raptors have inserted themselves into the conversation in the Eastern Conference once again. They have been in the conversation for years, but their opportunity feels as good as it’s ever been.
They are still lead by the two-headed monster of Kyle Lowry and DeMar, but their plethora of young talent gives them a lot of depth.
Fred Van Vleet’s career-high in points helped cause the frustration that pleased Kyrie and it definitely had his teammates in a good mood too.