The Kyrie Irving File
Getting to know Kyrie Irving, likely the No. 1 pick in the 2011 NBA Draft
Born: March 23, 1992.
Measurables: Duke listed Irving at 6'2, 180 pounds.
Family: Lost his mother, Elizabeth, at age five, and sports a tattoo of an angel on his chest in her honor. Cites his father, Drederick, as his role model. Drederick Irving was a star player at the University of Boston, and Kyrie Irving was born in Australia when his father was playing professionally in Melbourne. Has an older sister, Asia, and a younger sister, London.
High School: Finished at basketball powerhouse St. Patrick (N.J.). Played his first two years at Montclair Kimberley Academy. After his final high school season, played in the McDonald's All-American Game, Jordan Brand Classic and Hoop Summit. Irving also led the USA Under-18 team to a 5-0 record and a gold medal at the 2010 FIBA Americas U18 Championship in San Antonio.
At Duke: Played just 11 games as he suffered a toe injury after the eighth game and didn't play again until the NCAA Tournament. He scored in double figures in all 11 games he played and finished the season averaging a team-high 17.5 points per game while becoming the first freshman to start at point guard for Duke since 1999. His best game was a 31-point performance against Michigan State.
What He Likes: According to his official Duke bio, Irving enjoys "reading and keeping a journal." A little further research reveals that he can't resist double chocolate-chip waffles from Waffle House. He spent lots of time on Twitter last winter. At Duke, he listed his favorite athlete as Chris Paul. Tonight, Cavaliers fans are crossing their fingers that Irving can be the type of NBA player Paul is.
The Toe: Irving decided against having surgery after suffering the injury last Dec. 4, instead choosing to wear a cast for two months, a protective boot for another, then rehab. Despite knowing he could be the No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft and that he was risking further injury, he returned in time for the NCAA Tournament and scored 28 points in Duke's Sweet 16 loss to Arizona.
Coach K said: "Our whole program is overjoyed with having Kyrie here for one year and that he has the chance now to pursue a dream of being a high draft pick and a great player in the NBA."