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Sleeper team could get involved in Kyrie Irving free agency sweepstakes

Months after being traded from the Brooklyn Nets to the Dallas Mavericks, Kyrie Irving could be on the move again this offseason. The eight-time All-Star is set for unrestricted free agency, where he ranks as one of the best players available.

While the Mavericks are expected to try and retain the 31-year-old star, Irving is likely to face a robust market in free agency, with several point guard-needy teams searching for an upgrade.

According to NBA insider Marc Stein, one of those teams who could emerge is the Houston Rockets, who project to have the most cap space in the NBA this summer.

“I have also heard that the Rockets, in the event that they are unable to lure Harden away from Philadelphia and back to Houston, plan to weigh a run at Dallas’ Kyrie Irving. The Mavericks remain the league’s only known team with definitive interest in signing the mercurial Irving next month, but league sources say that the Rockets have been increasingly cited as a team that could (stress: could) join the bidding if Harden elects to stay with the 76ers.”

Marc Stein on Kyrie Irving’s free agency

It’s a fascinating tidbit from Stein, as Irving has yet to be linked to Houston. Yet, the Rockets haven’t topped 22 wins in any of their past three seasons and may not be viewed as an ideal competitive fit for Irving, who may be seeking a chance to join a title contender.

Yet, the Rockets are expected to take off in 2023, with Ime Udoka taking over as head coach, along with a collection of youth continuing to progress. It’s possible Irving sees Houston as an opportunity that’s too good to overlook, helping the Rockets pursue their first NBA title since 1995.

Related: Kyrie Irving reportedly wants to sign with one specific NBA team this summer