Chauncey Billups Knew Kyrie Irving Wanted Trade When He Turned Down Cavs GM Position
A few weeks ago, the Cleveland Cavaliers parted ways with GM David Griffin and were in the market for some new blood. Almost immediately, Chauncey Billups’ name came up and it seemed he was primed to take the position.
Suddenly and shockingly, it was revealed he had turned it down in favor of fulfilling his original obligation to play in Ice Cube’s BIG3 League instead.
No one knew exactly why Billups made that choice until he revealed the reason on the Vic Lombardi Show. While speaking on Altitude Sports 950 AM in Denver, Billups said that a lack of trade assets to rebuild (with LeBron James possibly leaving next season) and knowing Kyrie wanted out were why he turned down the job in the end.
“I didn’t talk to LeBron until after [turning down the job],” said Billups. “I deliberately did that because I’m going into a situation [the Cavaliers GM position] because I want to. But LeBron potentially leaving didn’t bother me. When you have an opportunity to really put something together and really put your imprint on it, rebuilding is a beautiful thing, if they’re going to have the patience with you. What bothered me more than if LeBron left or not was that I didn’t think they had great assets if you have to do a rebuild, so it was more that than LeBron.”
Billups said the following when asked about Kyrie’s trade request and the issues the Cavs have been dealing with for a while.
“It didn’t really surprise me, as they were doing their due diligence on me, I was doing the same thing,” said Billups. “I knew so much about the situation that the rest of the world doesn’t know, but that’s unfortunate man because he’s such a special talent. And so much of what’s he’s been able to accomplish on the floor, he’s been a beneficiary of LeBron James.”
Billups then gave his personal thoughts on Kyrie deamnding a trade and why it’s confusing to him as well as others.
“That would be alarming to me if I were a team looking to get him,” said Billups If it’s all about winning, I mean you got a chance to win every single year, and not only that, you getting everything you want. You getting all the shots you want, you playing for a great coach who’s letting you go to work, [the] game’s on the line they’re coming to you, you playing on TV every week, to me I don’t get it, I just don’t get it.”