It has been quite some time since Kyrie Irving graced the court at Cameron. He was not in Durham long enough for us to get to know him. Certainly not long enough for us to discover the frustration of trying to be a fan of his.
Irving’s controversial timeline got added to over the weekend in Boston as his Brooklyn Nets fell to the Celtics in first-round action of the NBA Playoffs. In case you missed it, Kyrie, a former member of the Celtics, verbalized profanity and communicated with his middle finger throughout the contest.
Irving ended up being fined $50,000 for his behavior. I am sure he considers the fine ‘pocket change’ so I do not expect him to change his antics. Especially if he scores another 39 points. Kyrie is likely to embrace his villain role against his former team. He will use the ‘whatever works’ reasoning. I realize Irving received a barrage of verbal insults during the game. Still, it was not a good look for the NBA.
Players Still Finding Way To Durham
No Coach K, no problem. At least when it comes to getting talent.
Just a week after Mike Krzyzewski’s final game as head coach for the Blue Devils, Duke has landed two more five-star recruits in Tyrese Proctor and MacKenzie Mgbako.
That gives Jon Scheyer, Krzyzewski’s successor, three five-star commits for the class as well as Sean Stewart, a top-30 four-star. Duke currently has the No. 1-ranked class for 2023 by a large margin, per 247Sports’ composite score.
Proctor, a guard from Australia, chose Duke over Arizona, among others. Mgbako, the third-ranked player nationally, is from Gladstone, N.J., and played his high school ball at Gill St. Bernard.
It’s worth noting, too, that Duke’s 2022 class also ranks No. 1 in the nation, with four five-stars: Dereck Lively II, Kyle Filipowski, Dariq Whitehead, Jaden Schutt and Mark Mitchell. The quartet knew of Coach K leaving, but chose Duke anyway. Lively and Filipowski are ranked Nos. 1 and 3 in the nation, respectively.
Scheyer, 34, was the handpicked successor to Coach K, He has been on Duke’s staff since 2013 and been in an associate head coaching role since the 2018-19 season.
All coaches speak of having to have talent. Scheyer will have players with talent.