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Kyrie Irving says the Cavs are 'the team to beat'

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Kyrie Irving seems pretty optimistic about how good the Cavs are.

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Kyrie Irving is pretty confident about the Cleveland Cavaliers' title chances. In fact, he went as far to say that the Cavs are the team to beat.

From ESPN's Dave McMenamin:

"Everything surrounding our team is just crazy to think that we're still in first place and we're still the team to beat, honestly," Irving said. "Regardless of what anybody else says of what we need and what we don't need and what we need to get better at -- us, internally, we know that we have to improve on a lot of things, but we've just got to handle business as professionals and continue to get better."

Irving was then asked if he meant that Cleveland was the team to beat in the East or in the entire league, over the likes of the Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs.

"I feel like we're the team to beat," Irving said. "I mean, honestly, it's open season until we get into the playoffs, so I have a lot more confidence than I think anyone realizes in our team and what's going on in our locker room."

These are strong words from Irving, but nor surprising. It's not as if he would say that the Cavs weren't the team to beat. The Cavs, by the way, matched their win total from last season with their win over the Nets.

From the outside, though, the Cavs probably aren't. Most would say the Warriors and Spurs are the favorites to win it all and that the Cavs have some work to do if they are going to win a title. Still, it's interesting to see Irving come out so strongly and say the Cavs are the team to beat and see him be so confident.