Kyrie Irving open about contract, watching from the sidelines

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As most already know, Hayward suffered a gruesome leg injury only 5 minutes into his Celtics debut, which sidelined him for the rest of the season. That came shortly after Celtics play-by-play man Mike Gorman said he wasn't sure if Irving would be a member of the Celtics in the coming seasons. Throw in a healthy Hayward to a rotation with Kevin Love, who averaged 17.6 points and 9.3 rebounds this season while shooting 41.5 percent from three-point range, and you have yourself a solid core that can challenge for 50 wins in the Eastern Conference.

They're technically right too. From "Uncle Drew" promo tours to rumors of his departure to NY slated for 2019, Irving has now repeatedly said something without saying anything.

Irving is eligible for a four-year, $107 million extension, but that would be $80 million less than what Irving could earn if he waits until the summer of 2019 and re-signs with Boston after opting out of the final year of his current pact.

"I'm just excited to see what that looks like, really getting that experience with [Gordon Hayward] and seeing what other pieces we have going forward", the 26-year-old guard told Robb.

"I think it's only natural to think about [if Irving was still here]". Irving's response about his future with the Celtics certainly isn't reassuring to green teamers, but it's also important to remember that this is Kyrie Irving. "They passed a lot of expectations, and I couldn't be more proud of them".

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"I'm truly grateful to be able to speak with management as well as our coaching staff", he said.

As for the effect of those conversations with Danny Ainge and the front office, Irving said, "It puts things at ease". "You work extremely hard to be able to play really well on that big of a stage". "That's really the only thing I'm anxious about". I think, yeah, that's human nature to think about that kind of thing. Until I get to that point, then I can't really answer any questions.

"It was going to be a process coming back", he said.

There will nearly certainly be hot take artists who read that from Irving and do the "he's not committed to the team" nonsense that we've come to expect out of radio hosts and columnists from the otherwise great city of Boston.

Irving acknowledged that he has that authenticity with the Celtics.