Kyrie Irving and Dillon Brooks engaged in a jersey swap following Monday night’s showdown between the Dallas Mavericks and Memphis Grizzlies.
There was just one problem – it wasn’t actually a swap.
Rather, Irving gave Brooks his jersey and then rejected the offer when Brooks attempted to reciprocate.
Kyrie didn’t even take Dillon Brooks jersey 😅 pic.twitter.com/USvpPtIVUq
— NBACentral (@TheNBACentral) March 21, 2023
Understandably, that caused something of a stir. Given that Brooks is one of the NBA’s biggest trash-talkers at the moment, and considering how he previously said he looked forward to playing defense against Irving, there were a lot of eyes on their match-up.
During the game, Irving trash-talked Brooks into oblivion.
Kyrie Irving to Dillon Brooks:
“Keep playing that dumba*s defense.”
(via @DrewHill_DM) pic.twitter.com/OcKTV9WYID
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) March 21, 2023
All of which made his refusal to accept Brooks’ jersey all the more fascinating.
After the game, Irving explained what happened.
Mavericks’ Kyrie Irving says it wasn’t intentional that he didn’t take Dillon Brooks’ jersey in a post-game swap:
“I saw that after the game. I’ll probably get it next time. Probably next time. Not this time. I was really onto the next thing, thought process-wise.” pic.twitter.com/ItEYxyIeWi
— Grant Afseth (@GrantAfseth) March 21, 2023
“I saw that after the game,” Irving said.
“I’ll probably get it next time. Probably next time. Not this time. I was really onto the next thing, thought process-wise.”
Brooks primarily lands in the headlines for two things: beefing with fellow NBA players and whoever he is dating at the moment.
— Game 7 (@game7__) March 21, 2023
Because of that, he tends to be something of a polarizing figure. And as a result of his divisive nature, a lot of fans want to see him lose.
When Irving refused to take his jersey during the swap, it certainly felt like a big L.
How will Brooks ultimately bounce back from this encounter with Irving? Time will tell.
Related: New Frontrunner Emerges In Dylan Raiola Recruiting Sweepstakes