Kyrie Irving Receives USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year Award
USA Basketball just announced their Male Athlete of the Year recipient and it is none other than Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving. This yearly award — which has been given to such athletes like Lebron James (2012), Kevin Durant (2010), Jason Kidd (2007), Carmelo Anthony (2006) and more — was given to Irving for his play during the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup, where the USA defeated Serbia 129-92 in the finals.
During the USA’s nine games, Irving dominated with “12.1 points, 3.6 assists, 2.6 rebounds, 1.9 steals in 24.4 minutes per game.” He also shot 60.9 percent from three point range [U.S. event career record] and a reported 56.3 percent from the field. But most importantly, in the final versus Serbia, Irving went off: scoring “26 points [and garnering] four assists while shooting 10-of-13 from the field, including a USA World Cup record 6-of-6 from 3-point,” solidifying his MVP honors for the tournament.
Duke University and USA head coach Mike Krzysewski commented on Irving receiving the award, “I think Kyrie came of age. He’s a terrific player, but he became a great player during the summer of 2014. I think sometimes to become that great player, you need a stage to do it on, and the stage was the World Cup. He performed his best on that stage, and now that’s the level he is expected to play at. I’m really proud of him.”
Kyrie Irving is 19-0 all-time in a USA uniform. Currently, the Cleveland Cavaliers are 16-10 after defeating the Memphis Grizzlies last night 105-91. Irving sits on the season with 19.7 PPG, 5.4 APG, 45.9 field goal percentage and 1.7 TOPG.
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