On Wednesday morning, ESPN's Get Up! co-host Jalen Rose boldly predicted that Celtics guard Kyrie Irving is playing in his final season as a Celtic.
Rose, who played 13 years in the NBA, began his point by mentioning all the great talent and assets that the Celtics currently have.
"[The Celtics] amass all these great assets, and young players, and talent, and then are fortunate enough to get Kyrie Irving," Rose said. "(Celtics general manager) Danny Ainge has done so well, that he can acquire Anthony Davis, that's how well he's done. (Celtics head coach) Brad Stevens ascended to be one of the top coaches in the game. So now you have all of these players on your roster, that expect playing time. They made it to the Conference Finals without Kyrie who they played well without [the previous night] ... it's gonna be interesting to see who gets cut out of the lineup."
Co-host Mike Greenberg then asked the simple question to Rose: "At the end of the day, the question is, are [the Celtics] better long-term without Kyrie Irving?"
"This will be Kyrie Irving's final season with the Celtics," Rose responded. "But they're not better [without him]."
The Celtics are 9-2 (.818) without Irving this season compared to 28-19 (.596) when he does play. Some may say that this makes the Celtics a better team without him, but I don't buy into that. It's not a huge sample size.
Anyway, I really hope Rose is wrong with his prediction. I think how deep the Celtics are able to go in this year's playoffs will have a significant impact on Irving's decision.
I'll end this post by saying this... Irving, Smart, Tatum. Those are the three guys you want to build around. Add Anthony Davis to that mix? Instant championship contenders.