This comes from the James Harden School for the Obvious Award-Winners (Class of 2012), but just so you guys know, Kyrie Irving is set to be named this season’s Rookie of the Year. It’s a real no-doy situation.
Irving led all rookies in scoring, was second in assists and third in minutes per game, all while playing four times as many games in the pros as he did in his one season at Duke University. He led the entire NBA in shooting percentage during isolation plays, was 23rd in PER (eighth among guards), and could have been an All-Star if not for the silly “no rookies” stance that seems to pervade bench selections. He hit at least two game-winning layups, won the prestigious BBVA Rising Stars MVP trophy which will be a source of pride for decades to come and had the Cavaliers challenging for a playoff spot during the first half of the season. Also, he is the first “Kyrie” in NBA history, which has to count for something.
All in all, Kyrie Irving did everything you’d want from a No. 1 overall pick, including giving Cleveland fans a reason to buy one of those new jerseys. No offense to Antawn Jamison, but it’s going to be way more fun for those guys to root for a young, exciting player for the next however many years than wasting $75 on a season of awkward flip shots. He was an easy pick at No. 1 and everything came out roses during his first season, barring a relatively minor shoulder injury.
As long as he doesn’t break the city’s heart by hosting a television special where he decides to team up with his best friends in Miami, things are looking up in Cleveland. Congrats to them and to him.