Kyrie Irving not worried about coexisting with Luka Doncic, compares him to Larry Bird


The Mavericks pretty much went all-in by acquiring All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving in a trade with the Nets.

The trade brings Dallas a much-desired second star to pair with superstar Luka Doncic and will lessen the burden on the young star's shoulders night-in-and-night-out.

After the trade, TNT's Charles Barkley threw cold water on the deal, saying he didn't see how the two stars could coexist. And he wasn't the only media member to express that opinion.

“From a basketball standpoint, it’s going to be interesting with the Mavs,” he said during an appearance on SiriusXM’s Mad Dog Sports Radio. “I don’t see how him and Luka can share the ball. I think that’s going to be fascinating. Luka’s a hell of a player, Kyrie’s a terrific player also, but they both need the ball to be successful. Neither one of them are great defensively, so I think it’s going to be interesting.”

Following his first practice as a Maverick on Tuesday at USC, Irving was asked for his thoughts on how he fits with Doncic. He responded by saying that he doesn't see the two having any issues on the court and even compared Doncic to one of the greatest players in NBA history.

"Still a wait-and-see," Irving said via Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News. "But me as a hooper, me as a basketball player, am I worried about us coexisting or finding cohesion? No. I've played with some of the greatest (players) of all time. I've been with some of the greatest teams in the Olympics and on the World Championships.

"This is going to be my first time seeing one of those bad Europeans come over and really dominate up close, and have the opportunity to do it at a pace that I don't think has ever been seen before other than like Larry Bird. Somebody that just plays at their own pace, scores a bunch of points, is constantly in that MVP conversation every year just because he commands that much attention. So as much as I can alleviate for him, as much as I can lead alongside him, I'm willing to do. But there's no pressure here. Nothing's forced with me and him. I just want to play basketball and enjoyed his talent, my teammates' talent, and work towards a championship."

Mavs coach Jason Kidd knows a thing or two about sharing the basketball and isn't concerned about the number of opportunities his stars will get with the ball in their hands.

“You can’t ask for a better situation,” Kidd said. "We feel that getting him is going to help put us in a position to win a championship.

“We look back at when we had JB [Jalen Brunson], being able to have a play-maker like that," said Kidd, guiding us through the comparison. When you look at Ky - nothing against JB - but Ky is at a different level, so this gives us another weapon. Someone’s going to be free.

“This isn’t two 23-year-olds trying to see who will be the alpha. This is Luka’s team. It will be Luka’s team."

Featured Image Photo Credit: (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)