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Home > News > Duke guard Kyrie Irving skipping drills at NBA Draft combine

Duke guard Kyrie Irving skipping drills at NBA Draft combine

Associated Press

CHICAGO — Duke point guard Kyrie Irving brushes off suggestions that he might be the Cleveland Cavaliers’ latest savior.

The consensus No. 1 prospect in next month’s NBA draft is aware of comparisons with LeBron James, whose controversial departure last year for the Miami Heat sent the Cavs into a tailspin.

“The comparisons will come regardless,” said Irving, who played 11 games as a Duke freshman and then declared for the 2011 draft. “That’s something I’m prepared for. As for right now, I just want to contribute to whatever team I go to.”

Irving averaged 17.4 points and 4.3 assists in 11 games for the Blue Devils last season. (AP Photo)

Cleveland, which had the NBA’s top record in 2010 and second-worst mark this year, gets the first shot at Irving in the June 23 draft after winning the No. 1 pick in Tuesday’s NBA lottery.

Ironically, it’s James who has served as Irving’s role model.

“He’s definitely filling like a big brother role in my life, just giving me advice,” Irving said. “When I was going through the three-month stretch when I was hurt he was talking to me every single week telling me to keep the faith. That was really special to me to have someone in the NBA already giving me advice — what things to do and what not to do.”

Irving was in Chicago on Thursday for the NBA combine. He will have pre-draft medical evaluations but won’t participate in closed-door drills.

“I’m just going, doing medical here — MRI and I did height and weight today,” Irving said. “I’m still working out around here (privately) but I’m not doing anything at the combine.”

Irving, who averaged 17.5 points in an abbreviated Blue Devils season, missed 26 games with a toe injury.

“It was a trying part of my life,” he said. “I’ve never been through something like that, never had an injury like that. It was a learning experience and I’m glad I moved on from that.”

He returned in time for the NCAA tournament and played in three games as the Blue Devils reached the Sweet 16.

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Categories: News
  1. September 12, 2011 at 6:53 AM

    I\’m impressed! You\’ve mangead the almost impossible.

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