Nets' Irving With Strong Words At Practice Friday For His Critics

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By WFAN Sports Radio 101.9 FM/66AM New York

Brooklyn Nets point guard Kyrie Irving made headlines earlier this week saying that the team had "glaring" needs beyond forward Kevin Durant in order to compete for a championship.

"We knew what we were coming into at the beginning of this season," Irving told reporters after Brooklyn's 117-106 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers Wednesday night. "Guys were going down left and right. (Garrett Temple) is out, (DeAndre Jordan) just got hurt, Wilson (Chandler) just came back. We've got complementary young guys as well that have done a great job the last three years. Collectively, I feel like we have great pieces, but it's pretty glaring we need one more piece or two more pieces that will complement myself, KD (Kevin Durant), DJ (Jordan), GT (Temple), Spence (Spencer Dinwiddie), Caris (LeVert), and we'll see how that evolves."

Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) dribbles in front of Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) during the fourth quarter on Jan 15, 2020 at Wells Fargo Center.Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Speaking to reporters on Friday, Irving responded to much of the criticism he's received for calling out the team's lack of championship talent on its current roster. Brooklyn sits at 18-22 this season, currently holding the eigth seed in the Eastern Conference had the postseason started today.

"It's not like I'm an ass---- yelling at everybody in the freaking locker room all the time," Irving explained. "If it's harsh as a leader or it's too much for anybody, you're not in our locker room—stay the f--- out."

Kyrie Irving with STRONG words at practice:"It's not like I'm an ass---- yelling at everybody in the freaking locker room all the time ... If it's harsh as a leader or it's too much for anybody, you're not in our locker room—stay the f--- out." pic.twitter.com/peVcXQgsun

— SNY (@SNYtv) January 17, 2020

Irving has played in just three games after missing close to two months (26 games) while recovering from a right-shoulder injury. He signed a four-year, $136 million contract this offseason after choosing Brooklyn in free-agency.