After Irving shook the faith of Celtics nation by saying he'll go wherever is best for him, the team and the media have been forced to consider a future without their centerpiece. Ainge, however, isn't hearing any of that. He thinks there's still a commitment between Irving and the Celtics that will be solidified in the offseason.
"The way I viewed the situation is that I think a lot of people, because of Kyrie's announcement at the beginning of the year, thought that there was a marriage," Ainge said Friday on Boston's 98.5. "And I think that it's more like an engagement. And we're going to get married on July 1st. I think that engagement is still on, as far as I know.
"In my individual conversations with Kyrie, we're still engaged, but we really can't make those vows, sign that contract, until July 1st," he continued, citing some "good conversations" he had with Irving following his public comments.
Kyrie's less-than-reassuring talk about his future in Boston came just days after reports revealed that Celtics were willing to go all in to build a team around Kyrie and on-the-move star Anthony Davis. Of course, that plan involves a lot of ifs. Like many A-listers looking to make moves this offseason, rumors have linked Irving to LeBron's Lakers.
Irving and LeBron played together back in Cleveland, where their relationship wasn't always positive. The pair butted heads on more than one occasion, but LeBron revealed last week that they put all their issues in the past.
"Yeah, we're in a good place right now," he said. "Me and Kyrie are in a good place right now. I love the man that he's becoming, I love the challenges he's accepted and I always wish the best for him."