When Kyrie Irving requested a trade from the Cavaliers, the club hoped the relationship could be repaired. It did not appear the Cavs were opposed to trading Irving because they reportedly had floated his name in talks. But they weren't going to rush into anything because Irving still has two years left on his contract.
However, with his demand leaking out to the public and Irving's growing unhappiness, a trade feels all but inevitable. According to ESPN's Zach Lowe, Cleveland feels they can get a hefty return for Irving, and a trade feels as if it's going to happen.
The Cavaliers are projecting confidence they can snare a king's ransom for Kyrie Irving, and more than that, they are acting -- for now -- as if a trade is almost inevitable, and that there is little chance of salvaging their relationship with him, according to several sources familiar with the situation.
Cleveland has leverage with years remaining on his contract, but a trade obviously changes their plans for next season. Irving has been a key piece for three straight NBA Finals runs, including a title, and the Cavs would have to figure out life without him.