Kyrie Irving was given the start for Team USA at point guard Wednesday night with Derrick Rose unavailable and continued to show why he is poised to become one the best floor generals in the league.
Irving finished with 12 points on a perfect 5-5 shooting (2-2 from three), five assists, four rebounds, two steals and no turnovers. Irving has not turned the ball over so far through three exhibition games and looks completely in control as he balances getting his own looks with getting his teammates involved.
Irving got the crowd on it's feet several occasions throughout the night. Showcasing his incredible handle, ability to get to the rim and shot making ability. So now for the highlights!
I think this could be considered an international incident:
This was also fun:
Irving recently stated that he needed to improve as a leader. Whether his improved decision making is a result of his self reflection or just having more talent around him, it certainly is encouraging to see. You could argue that Irving will either have as much or more talent in the starting lineup of the Cavaliers as he had tonight for Team USA, which certainly bodes well for those looking to see more of the new Kyrie Irving.
The team will play again Friday when they take on Puerto Rico. With the status of Rose's knee up in the air, paired with the play of Irving, it is very possible that we will see Irving get another chance to start at point guard Friday night.