According to FOX Sports’ Chris Broussard, the Cavaliers had a deal in place to get Eric Bledsoe and the number four pick in 2017 NBA Draft from the Suns for Kyrie Irving. The Cavs would have then traded the pick to the Pacers for Paul George.
Here is what Broussard told “The Herd” with Colin Cowherd as transcribed by Slam Magazine:
“The final straw as to why [Kyrie] wants out of Cleveland… I’m told that the Cavaliers had a deal done heading into the draft,” Broussard said.
“Cleveland would send Kyrie to Phoenix, which does want Kyrie. (Suns owner) Robert Sarver wants Kyrie Irving. […] Phoenix would send Eric Bledsoe and the No. 4 pick back to the Cavaliers.
“The Cavaliers would send the No. 4 pick to Indiana for Paul George. So you’re getting Eric Bledsoe and Paul George for Kyrie Irving. Now, that was going to happen.
“Dan Gilbert goes to LeBron and goes, ‘Look, we’ve got this deal on the table. I’ll do it if you commit long-term to stay in Cleveland.’” […]
“But [LeBron] would not commit, so Dan Gilbert would not do the deal.
“Now, Kyrie Irving finds out about the deal. […] And he rightly assumed that there’s no way the Cavaliers are doing this unless LeBron gives consent.
“That’s why he got mad with LeBron. He thought LeBron was in on it.
“LeBron’s take was more, Look, I’m not trying to trade Kyrie Irving. He’s great. But that’s a heck of a deal—Eric Bledsoe and Paul George. So if you do it, hey, that’s a great deal.
“But Kyrie took it as LeBron wanted him out of there.”
So, if this is true, I blame LeBron James. You had an opportunity to upgrade the roster. Paul George and Eric Bledsoe makes the Cavs a better team. However, LeBron won’t commit.
In the end, Irving was right. The Cavs are in a “peculiar’ position.
Here is the audio. Broussard discusses the proposed deal at 3:25: