Kyrie the Catalyst

Kyrie Irving’s historic game four gave the Cavaliers their first win of the 2017 NBA
Finals. Irving’s acrobatic finishes at the cup and limitless 3-point shooting gave the Cavaliers the
spark they needed to finally take a game and keep their championship hopes alive. LeBron James
also dropped another triple-double to maintain his series average but at the end of the game I
wondered, what made the difference in game four? LeBron is by far the best player on the Cavs
roster with Kyrie coming in second, James dropped a triple double in game two, four and came
just a couple of assist shy of a triple double in games one and three. Even with LeBron dropping
a triple double in nearly each contest, the Cavs dropped the first three games to the Dubs, so
what put them over the top in game four. None other than “Baby Mamba” Kyrie Irving!

Kyrie started the series off slow, so slow that people were believing the Cavalier Point
Guard was playing injured, but in the games three and four Irving showed us that he’s just fine.
In game three Kyrie dropped a staggering 38 point, which carried over to a 40-point game four. A
two-point difference might not seem like much but the way Kyrie played in game four made all
the difference for the Cavaliers in this series. If you watched games one through three you
understand that LeBron James was the best player on the Cavs roster, but even after what could
be considered his best game of the NBA Finals (game four), LeBron James was not the best
player on the court for the Cavaliers. Kyrie Irving played better basketball than anyone on either
side of the court during game four, and it gave a desperate Cavs team their first win of the series.
Yes, James is still the best player on the Cavs roster and I’d be and idiot to say otherwise,
but from tip-off all the way to the final whistle it was clear that Uncle Drew was taking over. Of
course, James had the better all-around game statistically, but there is only so much that stats can
measure. Ask yourself this, who were your eyes stuck on for most of the game? If you’re being
honest with yourself you would say Kyrie Irving. Robin kicked Batman right off center stage and
to the back with everyone else who had the pleasure of watching Irving’s career night. I’m not
saying that James didn’t show up (he had a triple double for crying out loud), but it was clear to
me Friday night that it was Kyrie’s world and we were all just living in it. The game came to a
point that no one in the arena watching in person, or at home tweeting and watching the game on
tv didn’t think Irving’s shot wasn’t going to go in. His fiery play and undeniable effort not only
elevated his own game, but his teammates as well. The Cavalier bench began to feed off Kyrie’s
energy which contributed to the Cavs setting the single game 3-point record in Finals game at 24,
and ultimately a long-awaited win for Cleveland fans!

In my opinion, for the Cavs to steal game five in Oracle and repeat as NBA Champs,
Kyrie Irving must not only step up but also pass the level of play of the great LeBron James.
James averaging a triple double in the Finals is something that we have all come to expect from
him but has been proven to not be enough to beat this new Warriors team. Kyrie’s has had games
this series where being great but not “LeBron James great” hasn’t been successful against the
best team in the NBA. The only way the Cavs will have any chance of pulling off the impossible,
is if Kyrie Irving is the best player on the court for three more games in a row. A task that is
easier said than done, but if Irving’s jersey is untucked and he steps up to the plate, then we may
see another year the Cleveland Cavaliers rewrite the NBA Finals history books.