What the Return of Kyrie Irving Means for the Nets Championship Odds
Within the last half hour, it has been reported that the Brooklyn Nets plan on using star PG Kyrie Irving in all games outside of New York. Up until this point Irving has been withheld from games and practices due to his stance on the COVID-19 vaccine.
Irving remains unvaccinated, so he will still be unable to play games in New York. However, he has been called upon to play away games thanks to the turbulent season the Nets have been having. While they have managed to stay atop the NBA, the Nets have been dealing with a plethora of injuries and COVID-related absences throughout the season. James Harden and Kevin Durant have taken on a huge increase in minutes, so the hope is Irving can lessen the burden on their shoulders.
The Nets remain the overwhelming favorite to win the NBA Championship, and the addition of Kyrie should only improve their odds more. According to FanDuel, the Nets stand as +145 favorites to win the conference, +250 favorites to win the Championship. Irving was an all-star last year, averaging 26.9 ppg while shooting over 40% from behind the arc.
The Nets next away game is December 23rd in Portland, followed by a Christmas day game in Los Angeles against the Lakers and a second game in LA against the Clippers on the 27th. It is unclear as to whether or not Kyrie will be ready to go by then.
The team has made it very clear that they are excited about Kyrie's return, and look forward to getting him on the court in the coming weeks.