Brooklyn Nets star guard Kyrie Irving found himself in the news for all the wrong reasons during the regular season.
The NBA champion sat out the first the first 35 games of the regular season after refusing to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Once he did return to the Nets, he had to sit out a couple handful of home games due to New York City’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
But when Irving has been on the court, he’s been nothing less than exceptional. His original Cleveland Cavaliers team found that out first-hand during Tuesday’s play-in tournament in the Eastern Conference.
Kyrie Irving was absolutely awesome for the Nets in helping them build a huge halftime lead. The dude hit on 9-of-9 shots in the first half, scoring 20 points in the process.
When Irving nailed a circus two to end the second quarter, fans inside the Barclays Center went absolutely nuts.
This really isn’t anything new for Irving since returning to the court. Including a 60-point outing against the Orlando Magic back on March 15, he’s been lethal as of late.
- Kyrie Irving stats (final 11 regular season games): 29.9 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 6.4 APG, 46% shooting, 43% 3-point
As Tuesday’s play-in game continued, Irving remained perfect shooting the ball up until a miss in the fourth quarter after 12 consecutive makes to open the game. In the end, he scored 34 points on 12-of-15 shooting while dishing out 12 assists en route to leading Brooklyn to the NBA Playoffs via a 115-108 win.
What’s even better here is the fact that Irving’s Nets will now go up against his former Boston Celtics team in the first round. Imagine the storylines surrounding this one given how his tenure with the Celtics ended.