Irving laid out the Cleveland Browns’ Josh Gordon in response to comments the wideout made about the Cavs‘ locker room strife.
Per Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal, Irving said:
Guys like Josh Gordon need to stay in his sport and mind his own business. Does he still play for the Browns? I’ll continue to root for the Browns, but in terms of this stuff here, what goes on in this locker room, he needs to stay out of it.
You just can’t take free shots at receivers like that these days, even when provoked.
UPDATE: Sunday, April 6, at 6:10 p.m. ET by Grant Hughes
Gordon obviously wasn’t shaken up by Irving’s salvo, writing via Instagram:
The direct mention of Dion Waiters comes in response to the shooting guard’s dismissal of Gordon’s original comments on the contentious relationship between the Cavaliers guards. Per Lloyd, Waiters said:
“[He] can’t put words in my mouth. That’s his opinion. That’s what he thinks. I can’t stop a man from saying that. That’s what he thinks.”
—End of update—
Irving’s proverbial hit on Gordon comes as retaliation for the wideout’s take on the widely reported rift between Irving and teammate Dion Waiters.
Gordon, speaking in an ESPN interview (via Lloyd), said of the Cavs’ interpersonal strife: “I talked about it with Dion. He’s my neighbor in my building so we hang out all the time. I’m aware of the rift in the locker room. That’s just alpha males and supreme athletes trying to share the spotlight.”
Irving, who may or may not be the kind of alpha male Gordon thinks he is, definitely channeled his anger into productive play on the court. He dropped a career-high 44 points on the Charlotte Bobcats in the Cavaliers’ first game following Gordon’s comments.
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