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LeBron was hurt by Kyrie praising Durant at his expense

LeBron-James

Earlier in October, Kyrie Irving made headlines for praising his new teammate Kevin Durant at the expense of LeBron James. At least that's how the whole NBA world interpreted his words.

One thing I’ve always been comfortable with is I felt like I was the best option on every team I played for down the stretch. This is the first time in my career where I could look down and be like, ‘That motherf----r can make that shot too, and he’d probably do it a lot easier.’ You know what I mean? It’s not really so much deferring. Because, in past situations, if I didn’t take the last shot, I felt guilty.

Kyrie Irving, The ETCs with Kevin Durant

Irving's comments raised more than a few eyebrows, especially given the history he and LeBron made, winning the organization's first-ever NBA championship in Cleveland. This was seen as an unnecessary shot at his former partner in crime and a parallel that Kyrie should've left undrawn.

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But the Nets' star point guard hadn't seen it like that. Instead, he turned to his inner NBA media rebel, saying that the clickbait society had twisted the whole thing for the sake of entertainment. "Why must it always be brotha against brotha? Why?" said Kyrie. "If I’m addressing anyone, I’ll say their name.”

No names were needed because Lebron - an implied target of Irving's remarks - caught wind of what his former teammate said and felt called out. He even took greater action, checking out the transcript of the conversation, trying to verify the validity of Kyrie's comments. LBJ wanted to make sure Irving hadn't been a victim of the media machinery twisting his words, and this is the conclusion he came to.

LeBron made it clear - there was no ambiguity in Kyrie's words. Whether Irving admits it or not, his comments were directed at James. And they didn't sit well with him. So next time, if he doesn't want to be sucked into what he describes as clickbait society, Kyrie should try verbalizing his thoughts more carefully. Otherwise, it'll once again be about "brotha against brotha." And it'll once again be initiated by Irving himself.

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