When Kyrie Irving signed a four-year contract with the Brooklyn Nets, he stuck a dagger into the heart of Boston Celtics fans. After telling the fanbase before the season that he was going to resign, Irving broke a promise that immediately made him public enemy number one in Boston. I was at the first game that Irving was supposed to play against the Celtics following his departure, and the atmosphere was insane as every fan hated him.
Now four years removed from the situation, and with the direction both sides have headed, I wonder how different it would be if Irving had resigned with the Celtics. I think it’s an important what-if in Cs history that is worth analyzing.
When you look at where the Boston Celtics were when Irving left for the Nets, they had a championship-level roster that really only lost because of poor chemistry and too many mouths to feed. If Irving had resigned, Danny Ainge would have made the necessary moves to get Irving and the Celtics the right chemistry.
Could the Boston Celtics have won it all with Kyrie Irving and the Jays?
Even though the mix of Irving with Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown did not work, I still think they could have won a title together. If they all would have bonded together and sacrificed for the greater good, they could have been a potential dynasty.
Now most Boston Celtics fans are not complaining about not having Irving as the Cs are firmly championship contenders, but it does suck that the Jays never won a title with Irving.
The flip side to how the last four years could have turned out is if Irving had resigned, and then the Celtics no longer have Tatum and Brown, which would have put them in the same position as the Nets. There is a world where Irving convinces Anthony Davis or Kevin Durant to the Celtics, and then the Cs are forced to get rid of one of Tatum/Brown. In this scenario, the Celtics would have either won championships or fallen flat on their face like the Nets did.
Ultimately, the Cs are in a great position without Irving, but it’s fair to wonder what could have been.