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Cavaliers fans or Celtics fans: Who gets angrier if the Kyrie Irving trade falls through?


CALVIN COWHERD: I said from day one I thought Boston won the trade because Boston got the star. This is something I’d like to remind everybody. What is this trade being called? Is it being called the J Crowder trade? Is it being called the seven foot prospect and the draft pick trade? No, it’s being called the Kyrie Irving trade. That’s why I told you Boston won the trade. It’s all about Kyrie Irving.

Cleveland, reportedly, will complete this deal if they can get one more pick a first or a second round pick. Danny obviously didn’t want to give many thing, Danny Ainge. But ask yourself, if you think Cleveland won this deal, if the Cavs pulled out and said, forget it, we’re done. What side, what fan base, what front office would be more upset? Boston’s.

Boston fans would be ticked. The media would be outraged. Because Cleveland would get back the Mercedes-Benz. They get back the superstar and there’s only five in the league. If the Cavaliers pull out of this deal and blow it up, they get back the singular player, who hit the game winning shot, in their only championship. We’ll just start over. I can always trade a superstar. If Cleveland takes Kyrie Irving back, Boston is just a good, not a great, basketball team. That’s what they’ve been the last five years– a team without a superstar. Sorry Gordon Hayward– you’re good, you’re not a superstar.

I’ve been watching the NBA for 40 years. Here’s what I’ve never heard anybody ever say– boy, the Miami Heat, they gave up way too much for Shaq. Nobody has ever said that. Here’s what else nobody has said in the 40 years I’ve watched the NBA– boy, the Lakers gave up way too much for a Kareem. No, nobody’s ever, ever said that.

The over-unders came out yesterday in Vegas with the NBA. Golden State, best record, two superstars– four stars. Celtics, with Kyrie as a superstar, Gordon Hayward, have a star. The top four to five teams all have superstars or stars. You know who plummeted 20 games in Vegas? The Bulls. They got rid of one star, Jimmy Butler. Jimmy Butler– and the Bulls got two players and a talented rookie, for Jimmy Butler. Vegas says their 20 wins less.

What? Excuse me? I beg your jargon? Vegas is like, uh, bulls are 20 wins less. Well, but they got two good players and they’ve got a good talented rookie, Zach LaVine. Twenty wins less.

Nobody ever says with a trade, it was called the Shaq trade, not the Caron Butler trade with the Lakers and the Heat. It was called the Kareem trade, not the Dave Meyers trade. This is called the Kyrie Irving trade. OK, if Cleveland says, I’m out, I’m done, it’s over, the loser is the Celtics. That’s the loser in this deal.

NBA trades work one way. Whoever gets the superstar– and Kyrie Irving is the best finisher in this league– who ever gets the superstar wins. It may not work this way in baseball or hockey trades. It may not. But in basketball, where only five guys play at a time, and one player can have a disproportionate effect on the outcome of games, Cleveland has the leverage.

They pull out of this puppy? They still get a Mercedes, a Laguna Beach house, an NBA superstar. I can always find somebody who’s good, who wants to be great, and Kyrie is the difference.

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