Skip to main content

The Implosion Of The Brooklyn Nets Began After Kyrie Irving Disrespected 'Lucky' The Leprechaun In Boston

The Implosion Of The Brooklyn Nets Began After Kyrie Irving Disrespected 'Lucky' The Leprechaun In Boston

Cast yourself back to May 31, 2021. The Brooklyn Nets have just beaten the Boston Celtics in Game 4 of their first-round matchup in the 2021 NBA Playoffs. As the Nets looked to romp their way through the Eastern Conference playoffs by eliminating Boston in Game 4, the biggest talking point from the game was Kyrie Irving.

After the Nets had secured the win on Boston's home court, Irving decided to walk on over to the center of the court and allegedly stomp the logo of the team he played for prior to joining Brooklyn. The logo features Celtics mascot 'Lucky The Leprechaun', a very respected figure in Celtics history as it's been the mascot of the team since the days of Bill Russell's dominance and prior.

The stomp sparked massive outrage that was soon forgotten as the Nets won Game 5 and went to the second round to face the eventual champions in the Milwaukee Bucks. However, the last time the Nets franchise was pointing in an upwards trajectory was after that series, with a Reddit user u/don_sook theorizing that the Nets downfall began when Kyrie disrespected Lucky.

In the very next round, the Nets faced a barrage of injuries to Kyrie Irving and James Harden that made them less than competitive in the series. Kevin Durant could have still won the series for the Nets, but his foot was on the line of a possible game-winner in Game 7. The Nets were eliminated but poised to come back stronger.

At the start of the 21-22 season, the Nets were favorites to win the title but saw Kyrie Irving marred in a vaccine controversy as Irving refused to get the shot in New York, a state where he needed the vaccine to be allowed to compete and work. As a result, Irving sat out most of the season.

Irving sitting out led to James Harden asking out of the team and being traded to the Philadelphia 76ers for Ben Simmons, who refused to suit up for the Nets in the season due to a back injury. The Nets would fall from being the best team in the East in December to becoming a play-in team and getting swept in the first round of the 2022 Playoffs.

The first-round sweep was handed out to the Nets by the same team Kyrie disrespected a year prior, the Boston Celtics. Since that loss, the Nets have seen both Kyrie and Kevin Durant express a desire to leave the team, with the Nets being forced to listen to offers for both their star players they took a bet on in 2019. 

Whether or not the basketball Gods actually curse teams that disrespect Lucky is obviously not known, but future players may be a little more cautious when they come to the TD Garden in Boston in the future.