One dude that has come out of Duke who has blown my mind is Uncle Drew aka Kyrie Irving. How many players in college only played 3 games, got hurt and came back to play in the tournament, and then go on to the NBA as the first pick in the NBA draft?
Kyrie Irving was drafted to the Cleveland Cavaliers after playing 11 games with Duke where he was averaging 18 points per game. He was able to renew Cleveland’s love in the Cavaliers after LeBron James left to go to Miami. Irving showed that even though he only played 11 games in college, he was ready for the pros. Irving maintained his 18 points per game as a rookie. That was a great beginning for a team that was losing hope. Although they didn’t make the playoffs, the future looked very bright for him.
That bright future took a sharp turn in the 2012-2013 season when Irving broke his index finger and then later fell on his face, breaking his nose. He came back after his last injury wearing a protective face mask that made him look like a superhero. His superpowers were on display against the Knicks where he put up 41 points and five assists. No one had seen someone that young putting up numbers like that since Michael Jordan back in 1985 (33 points at Madison Square Garden). During the season Irving averaged 23 points, 6 assists, 4 rebounds, and 2 steals a game which prompted his first All-Star game appearance. But before he did that, he scored 32 points as a member of Shaq’s team in the Rising Stars Challenge where he made Brandon Knight fall after a stunning crossover. These performances made NBA fans eager to see his progression over the next year.
The current 2013-2014 season has shown that Irving’s hard work was consistently moving him forward. He has averaged 22 points and 6 assists, so of course he was selected to the All-Star team again this year. He is trying his hardest to get his team in the playoffs with the help of a new addition, Luol Deng. What this man has done despite trading rumors has been amazing, all while incorporating a lot of fun into his play.
He has definitely had his share of fun off the court with his antics as Uncle Drew. The very first commercial began with an old man on the court with his nephew explaining that young folks don’t know about the game of basketball and getting buckets. Everyone was shocked to see an old man running up and down the court looking just about ready to crack a hip. Only then he turned up his skills and began crossing over young people, shooting from downtown, and dunking the ball. People were amazed at this old man’s performance not knowing that he was Kyrie Irving the entire time. It was great to see people’s faces happy and full of joy cracking jokes on the people who were getting fried.
Kyrie Irving is the future of the NBA and I am so glad to say that I am a Duke fan getting the chance to watch this man dominate on the court.