Let’s face it: Kyrie Irving is a weird cat. He’s mesmerizing on the court. I often call him “Basketball Houdini” with how he gets in-and-out of jams. He probably has some of the best handles of all time. He’s a top scorer in the NBA. He’s making a serious effort on the defensive side of the ball this year. His vision is improving. All these things are true. But he can drive people crazy with the things he says to the media. That’s where Adam Kaufman and Paul Flannery start this week’s episode of Celtics Beat.
First of all let’s all admit that Kyrie calling LeBron James seems unusual on the surface. LeBron’s presence was the reason why Irving wanted out of Cleveland. You would think there’s still some bad blood between those two guys, no matter what they might say to the media. But in contrast to that, who would be a better player to call for this exact piece of advice? Kyrie is having trouble leading his group of young Celtics to the top of the Eastern Conference. This is actually something LeBron might have good advice on. Irving at one point was a young player trying to set himself apart from the rest of the veterans. He probably was not the easiest guy to deal with at the time. Seems like if you want to know about how to lead young players the correct way LeBron would be a good guy to call.
Another big question that this Celtics team needs to figure out is if Irving is actually the guy to lead this squad. Last year a lot of people said Al Horford was the leader of the team. And that’s probably for good reason. Al is the oldest guy on the team, has a ton of experience in the regular season and playoffs. And because he’s the most veteran guy on the team people are going to naturally look up to him. Al is soft spoken, but his words relay a good message. Marcus Morris also assumed a leadership role last year with some of the younger wings, but most of the responsibility fell on Al. But this is only because Kyrie was out with a knee injury. If Kyrie were healthy the entire year maybe things would be different. And maybe the Celtics would not be going through these problems.
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8:08 Does Kyrie have good intentions?
16:32 Why did Kyrie tell everyone he called LeBron?
23:17 The Celtics still have chemistry issues
29:31 Brad needs to be tougher with minutes