Ranking Kyrie Irving’s Top Early Free Agency Options

The Brooklyn Nets have had a whirlwind of a season and a lot of this is because of Kyrie Irving’s vaccination status, which has resulted in him missing a total of 54 games over the course of the 2021-22 NBA season. 

One of the key headlines of this year, Irving was initially ruled out due to New York City’s vaccine requirement and then he was elevated to a “part-time player” near midseason for the Nets, allowing him to play in only road games, not in New York City. 

Just recently, Kyrie Irving was granted “full participation” in games this season after New York City amended their vaccine requirement that has affected Irving and the Nets all year long. 

With limited time remaining this NBA season, the Nets are struggling and it is looking like they will have to earn their playoff spot via the play-in tournament, as they are 40-37 on the season. 

Between injuries and Kyrie Irving’s status all season long, the Nets really have not been able to find consistency, which has directly contributed to them not looking like the championship contender many thought they would be at the beginning of the season. 

Heading into the offseason, the Nets will undoubtedly have to face questions about Ben Simmons and his future with the organization after coming over at the trade deadline in the James Harden to Philadelphia trade, but they will also need to address Kyrie Irving’s future. 

Irving does have a $36.9 million player option for the 2022-23 season, but many around the league are expecting him to opt-out of his contract in search of a new long-term deal. 

While it does not appear that Irving will be heading somewhere else in free agency, especially given his vaccination status, it is still worth noting that skill-wise, Kyrie Irving will be one of the best available unrestricted free agents should he opt out of his player option. 

Will Irving be on the move in the offseason? Let’s take a look at the early Top-3 destinations for Kyrie Irving heading into the offseason. 

#3 Los Angeles Lakers

Hey… you just never know in this league!

Author: Lucy Green