Kyrie Irving, a former champion who is known as one of the game’s best dribblers and scorers in the league, is killing it on the court right now. After a rough January for his personal life, he decided to step away from the Brooklynn Nets and focus on himself. Since rejoining the team, he has averaged over 30 points a game and Nets have had the best offensive rating in the NBA.
The heat Kyrie took from the press is unbelievable. For someone who is out with “personal reasons” that many believe have ties to him being upset about the storming of the Capitol, it’s almost sickening how many people threw dirt on Kyrie’s name. Stephen A. Smith said on air that Kyrie owes an explanation for the public and the fans, not just his teammates. Charles Barkley referred to him as “ditching his team” and many other sports personality’s called for Kyrie to retire from the game. ESPN’s Kendrick Perkins took some shots at the situation and Kyrie’s teammate KD responded by calling Perkins a “sell out”.
On January 5th the Nets demolished the Utah Jazz by a score of 130-96 behind Kyrie’s 29 points of his own. Little did anyone know that Kyrie was about to be the most confusing player in the NBA and he doesn’t need to explain to anyone. Kyrie then missed out on 6 Nets games from January 7th-January 18th, due to personal reasons and COVID-19 protocol due to being away from the team. While Kyrie was away from the team, the Nets decided to shake the team up a little bit by trading for former MVP James Harden, who now leads the league in assists with a little over 11 a game.
The amount of support Kyrie received was actually very good. His teammate Kevin Durant said that the Brooklyn Nets “support Kyrie 100 percent” and coach Steve Nash said they talked regularly during his absence. Kyrie went on air in an interview and said his issues are personal and that his teammates got an explanation. He did not give one out to the public and rightfully so said he didn’t feel the need to explain anything to anyone outside of his friends, family, and the Brooklyn Nets organization.
Irving is putting up an All-NBA year by averaging 27.5 points and over 5 assists a game. Shooting the ball at a 53% from the field and 43% from beyond the arc, he has clearly put the league on notice. The Brooklyn Nets are 5-2 in their last 7 games and Kyrie has scored 37, 38, and 39 points in 3 of his 9 games back. Kyrie has solidified that he is back on his level he was during his All-NBA years and is playing like a top 10 player in the league. Next to black mask Kyrie and untucked jersey Kyrie, I haven’t seen a better version of #11 in black and white. The Nets have their eyes on the NBA Finals if this Big 3 keeps it up. Uncle Drew is back!