The Cleveland Cavaliers had two promising young players in Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters during their post-LeBron James era. The team was trying to become a competitive squad again and these two were seen as their biggest hope, along with Tristan Thompson. Irving and Waiters spent two and a half seasons together but they never had a positive record.
In fact, the Cavaliers went 57-107 in the two full seasons that Irving and Waiters spent together at the Quicken Loans Arena. Waiters was traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2015 when LeBron made his return to the team. The relationship between Waiters and Kyrie wasn't the best and that triggered the Cavs to trade him away.
According to Joe Vardon, Bill Oram and Jason Lloyd of The Athletic, the two guards never got along during the time they shared touches.
“The team’s executives at the time thought Waiters would be a perfect fit off the bench if LeBron ever returned,” wrote Vardon, Oram and Lloyd. “The Cavs did eventually get a chance to see if that was right, but Waiters and the organization had already accumulated years of baggage because he and the team’s resident budding star, Kyrie Irving, never got along.
“Waiters and Irving always disliked each other, no matter how much the organization tried covering it. Waiters couldn’t understand why Irving, the No. 1 overall pick in 2011 and the NBA Rookie of the Year, was thought to be the better of the two by most deep thinkers inside the organization. Then former Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon went on ESPN and said he and Dion lived in the same building and they hang out all the time and he (Gordon) was ‘aware of the rift in the locker room. That’s just alpha males and supreme athletes trying to share the spotlight.'”
Although they never were a winning team, one supposes the differences between Kyrie and Dion played a role in the struggles the team had during those years. Now Waiters is a part of the Los Angeles Lakers, teaming up with LeBron once again while Kyrie is part of the Brooklyn Nets, teaming up with Kevin Durant to take the team to the championship.
So far, Kyrie has had the better career, being a consistent All-Star, being important in the playoffs and winning a championship.