Kyrie Irving joins Mavericks as clubs make NBA trade official

NEW YORK (AFP) — Kyrie Irving was welcomed to the NBA's Dallas Mavericks on Monday, Feb. 6, as the Texas team and the Brooklyn Nets confirmed their blockbuster trade deal.

Kyrie Irving (AFP)

Days after the controversial guard requested a move before Thursday's NBA trade deadline, both clubs tweeted confirmation of the transfer following team physicals.

The Mavericks tweeted "Welcome to Dallas" messages to Irving and Markieff Morris, who came over from the Nets in exchange for Spencer Dinwiddie and Dorian Finney-Smith, who received a similar social media greeting from Brooklyn.

The Nets also reportedly received a future first-round NBA Draft pick and two second-round selections in the deal.

The Los Angeles Lakers, Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Clippers were among several clubs linked to Irving after his request to be moved went public, reportedly after failing to agree on terms for a long-term contract extension.

Dinwiddie returns to Brooklyn, where he played for five seasons before a knee ligament injury early in the 2020-21 campaign.

Irving, who won an NBA crown with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016, is averaging 27.1 points, 5.3 assists and 5.1 rebounds a game this season, at times carrying the scoring load for Brooklyn while a knee injury sidelined Kevin Durant.

His skills will make a potent combination with those of Dallas star Luka Doncic, who is averaging 33.4 points per game but is putting in massive minutes to handle the Mavs' scoring load.

Irving's four seasons in Brooklyn brought headaches. He missed dozens of games last season after refusing to be vaccinated for Covid-19.

This season, he was suspended for eight games after a social media post referencing a film that contained anti-Semitic themes and initially refusing to apologize.

Irving has played fewer than 150 games over the last four seasons.

The Mavericks are sixth in the Western Conference at 28-26 while the Nets are fourth in the East at 32-20.