Since we have last met at this fine establishment, news has broken that Kyrie Irving wants to be traded away from Cavaliers, preferably to somewhere he can be the real centerpiece and not LeBron's sidekick. I explain the whole situation right here.
What developed in Act II of this drama was quite interesting: It looks like LeBron might be the one framing all of this for us.
Stephen A. Smith reported Sunday that Kyrie's camp believes LeBron leaked the trade request (which had been a couple of weeks old when revealed). That means that the framing of why Kyrie wants out came from LeBron's camp. How interesting that a second narrative — that Kyrie wants to find better franchise stability — is beginning to crop out as Irving's camp presumably reacts.
On Monday, LeBron reportedly lobbied Derrick Rose to join the Cavaliers on a one-year flyer. The plugged-in Joe Vardon reported that Rose and Bron "spent the day together discussing how the team will return to the finals without Kyrie" and that "James is eager to see [Irving] off."
It would appear that LeBron is MAD. Good luck to you, Kyrie.
More Chronicles of Kyrie stuff: Zach Lowe's deep-dive on the options and pitfalls out there on the trade market. The ESPN crew's tick-tock of how Kyrie came to this place. Chris Herring's analysis of Kyrie's best role. What Kyrie's request says about LeBron. Kevin Love has the best no-comment on this ordeal. Kevin O'Connor looks at the chain reaction of impacts.
Lost in the aftermath of the Chronicles of Kyrie: John Wall signed a designated player extension that should keep him in D.C. through 2023. Huge win for the Wizards.
Pau Gasol's deal with the Spurs is basically two years, $32 million with a little more guaranteed in a third year. I don't get it. Why did the Spurs convince Pau to opt out if they were just going to give him the same amount of money but tack on an extra year? This hurts San Antonio's ability to compete for top free agents in 2018. Is this the rare misstep from Buford and Popovich?
Jonathan Tjarks thinks Luka Doncic might be the best international prospect this century.
I love this Mirin Fader joint on the real first family of hoops: the Ogwumike sisters.
Angel McCoughtry felt like her body was breaking down, so she took a year off to open an ice cream parlor in Atlanta.
The G League is experimenting with a single-elimination playoff tournament capped with a best-of-three championship round.
Sweet story about Larry Nance Jr. and a childhood U.S. military pen pal.
Ben Osborne goes deep on Troy "Escalade" Jackson, the king of street ball.
It's the offseason for the creative NBA team social media folks, too. Neat idea from the Kangz.
Great profile of WNBA great Sue Bird.
Steph Curry is out here mocking his boy Klay Thompson.
And finally: The Wolves roasted the Hades out of Dave Chappelle.