‘I failed as a leader’ says Nets star Kyrie Irving on his stint with Boston Celtics
Kyrie Irving was accountable enough to admit his shortcomings as a leader during his two-year stint with the Boston Celtics.
The newly-signed Brooklyn Nets star addressed all of his issues in Boston by explaining that the death of his grandfather in late October changed everything.
“Basketball and the joy I had from it was sucked away from me,” Irving said on Media Day.
Irving, who committed in signing with the Celtics in pre-season, had a falling out his teammates and the organization as season progressed.
“There was a facial expression that I carried around with me throughout the year. Didn’t allow anyone to get close to me in that instance, and it really bothered me. I didn’t take the necessary steps to get counseling or get therapy to deal with somebody that close to me dying. I’ve never dealt with anything like that.”
It was six-time NBA All-Star underwhelming performance against Milwaukee Bucks in the second round of the Playoffs that put the nail in the coffin in their tumultuous relationship, and he was also able to touch that issue.
“I responded in ways that are uncharacteristic,” Irving said.
“A lot of the battles I thought I could battle through in the [Boston] team environment, I just wasn’t ready for. And I failed those guys, in the sense that I didn’t give them everything I could have during that season. … In terms of me being a leader in that environment and bringing everyone together, I failed.”
Irving was honest enough to talk about his turbulent days in Boston, and now he is ready to move on and begin again with a fresh “mindset” in Brooklyn.