The Brooklyn Nets would like to sign superstars this offseason. They've built up a winning culture, and they're ready to supplement it with pieces who rise above the rest of the roster noise.
But if anyone in the front office actually believes the whispers coming out of Nets camp on Saturday morning, then they might need to pop in a tape and watch all 82 games of the Boston Celtics' 2018-19 season.
Yes, adding Kyrie Irving would be a boon. No, you wouldn't keep D'Angelo Russell happy and thriving by making such a move.
Not only do we have little-to-no recent history that Irving still "plays well with others," but then you're forced to factor in the specific "other" of Russell, and what that entails.
While Irving is coming off a train wreck at the Garden, Russell came into his own in 2018-19, proving himself to be the ball-dominant crunch time superstar and leader who Magic Johnson doubted would ever emerge during his Laker days. After a monstrous step forward, both physically and mentally for the man with ice in his veins, the organization expects him to acquiesce to Irving, a man who hasn't earned the reins? Why do we believe Russell would accept this? And why should he?
This is not even to mention, of course, the other side of the ball.
There's no shame in the Nets recruiting Irving if they believe he's an upgrade over Russell's ceiling. But if anyone involved honestly believes that D-Lo, after teetering over the maturity line for the first time last season, would accept an instant deemphasis, then Brooklyn's in for a rude awakening.