Kyrie Andrew Irving is an American professional basketball player for the Brooklyn Nets of the National Basketball Association. He was named the Rookie of the Year after being selected by the Cleveland Cavaliers with the first overall pick in the 2011 NBA draft. A six-time All-star and two-time member of the All-NBA team, he won an NBA Championship with the Cavaliers in 2016.
Irving played college basketball for the Duke Blue Devils before joining the Cavaliers in 2011. He won the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award for the 2014 All-Star Game. In the 2016 NBA finals, Irving made the championship-winning three-point field goal to complete the Cavaliers’ historic comeback over the Golden State Warriors. After another Finals appearance in 2017, Irving requested a trade and was dealt to the Boston Celtics. He played as a Celtic for two seasons, after which he signed with the Brooklyn Nets as a free agent in 2019. He has also played for the US national team. In February 2020, he was elected vice-president of the National Basketball Players Association, replacing Pau Gasol.
Early Life and Age.
Irving was born in Melbourne, Australia, on March 23, 1992; he is the son of Drederick and Elizabeth Irving, American expats, and the stepson of Shetellia Irving. He has an older sister, Asia, and a younger sister, London. His father, Drederick, played college basketball at Boston University alongside Shawn Teague and under coach Rick Pitino. After completing his college career, Irving’s father moved to Australia to play professionally for the Bulleen Boomers in the SEABL. Irving lived in the Melbourne suburb of kew before relocating to the United States when he was two years old.
His mother, who was Sioux, died of an illness when he was four, and Drederick raised him along with the help of Irving’s aunts. He is an enrolled member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and was given his Lakota name, Ȟéla (Little Mountain), in 2018 to honour both his heritage and to recognize the donations he made to the tribe during the Dakota Access Pipeline Protests. Since then, he has continued to honour his Lakota heritage through donations to the tribe, designing Nike shoes dedicated to his tribe as well as burning sage before every game.
His inspiration to play in the NBA came after playing at Continental Airlines Arena during a school trip in fourth grade, when he declared, “I will play in the NBA, I promise.” Due to his father’s connection to Boston University, Irving spent a lot of time in Boston, including at BU’s basketball skills camp. In fifth grade, he was offered a scholarship to Boston University by then-head coach Dennis Wolf. As a teenager, Irving played for the Road Runners of the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU).
Irving played for Montclair Kimberley Academy in his freshman and sophomore years in high school. He averaged 26.5 points, 10.3 assists, 4.8 rebounds, and 3.6 steals and became only the second 1,000 point scorer in the school’s history. In his sophomore year, he led MKA to its first New Jersey Prep ‘B’ state title. After that year, he transferred to St. Patrick High School because he felt he needed a bigger challenge. He had to sit out the first 30 days of St. Patrick’s season due to the transfer. At St. Patrick, Irving played with Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, who was widely regarded as one of the best players in the class of 2011.
Irving committed to Duke on October 22, 2009, in a television broadcast on ESPNU. Irving played with the Blue Devils during the 2010-11 basketball season under the guidance of head coach Mike Krzyzewski. Through the first eight games of the season, he averaged 17.4 points per game on 53.2% shooting, 5.1 assists, 3.8 rebounds and 1.5 steals.
Irving was a strong contender for NCAA Freshman of the Year until he suffered a severe ligament injury in his right big toe during the ninth game of the season. On March 17, the day before Duke played Hampton in the first round of the NCAA tournament, he returned for his first game since his injury.
Duke advanced to the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Tournament but fell to Arizona. Irving scored 28 points in what turned out to be his last game for Duke.
Irving announced that he would forgo his final three seasons of eligibility and enter the 2011 NBA Draft, where he was selected with the first overall pick by the Cleveland Cavaliers. Irving was named to the 2012 Rising Stars Challenge, where he played for Team Chuck. He scored 34 points in the game, going 8-of-8 from three-point range, and earned MVP honours. He also won the 2012 NBA Rookie of the year award with 117 of a possible 120 first-place votes. Irving was the only unanimous selection to the NBA All-Rookie First Team. For the season, Irving averaged 18.5 points, 5.4 assists and shot 46.9% from the field, including 39.9% on three-pointers.
On July 10, 2014, Irving signed a five-year, $90 million contract extension with the Cavaliers. His contract extension came in the wake of LeBron James’s return to Cleveland and Kevin Love’s trade request from Minnesota, as the trio teamed up to start a new “Big Three” in Cleveland. After a shaky start to the season, in which they fell to a record of 5–7 after a November 22 loss to Toronto, the Cavaliers went on an eight-game winning streak during which Irving averaged 19.3 points per game, including a 37-point game against the New York Knicks on December 4. After their streak-ending loss on December 11 to Oklahoma City, the Cavaliers went on to win just five more games in December, finishing 2014 at 18–14.
In July 2017, Irving requested the Cavaliers to trade him, reportedly wanting to be more of the focal point of his own team instead of continuing to play alongside LeBron The next month, on August 22, he was traded to the Boston Celtics in exchange for Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic, and the rights to the Brooklyn Nets’ 2018 first-round draft pick. Eight days later, the Celtics agreed to send the Cavaliers a 2020 second-round draft pick via the Miami Heat to complete the trade, as compensation for Thomas’ failed physical.
In his debut for the Celtics in their season opener against the Cavaliers on October 17, 2017, Irving had 22 points and 10 assists in a 102–99 loss. He had a chance to tie it with a 3-pointer at the horn but missed. On October 30, 2017, he scored 24 points for the third straight game in helping the Celtics defeat the San Antonio Spurs 108–94.
Irving signed with the Brooklyn Nets in free agency on July 7, 2019.
On October 23, 2019, Irving debuted for the Nets with 50 points, 8 rebounds, and 7 assists in a 127–126 overtime loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves, becoming the first player in NBA history to score 50 points or more in a team debut. Irving became the seventh player in franchise history to score 50 points or more in a single game, and joins Stephon Marbury (2001) as the only one to also record 15 combined rebounds and assists. He also scored 25 of the Nets’ 56 points in the first half. Irving missed 26 games due to a right shoulder injury, and returned on January 12, 2020, scoring 21 points on a 10-of-11 shooting in the 108–86 win over the Atlanta Hawks. On February 20, it was announced that Irving would undergo season-ending surgery on his injured shoulder.
In 2012, Irving was in contention for a position on the Australian for the 2012 Olympics. However, he elected not to represent his nation of birth, instead focusing on selection for the US national team for the 2016 Olympics.
Kyrie Irving’s girlfriend since December of 2018 may be on the verge of becoming Kyrie Irving’s wife. TMZ reports that Golden, real name Marlene Wilkerson, was spotted with a giant rock while walking hand in hand with the enigmatic Nets star.