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“Kyrie Walks Around With the Kobe Spirit”: Kevin Garnett Heaps Praise on Mavericks Star for Brilliant Season

Jay Mahesh Lokegaonkar

“Kyrie Walks Around With the Kobe Spirit”: Kevin Garnett Heaps Praise on Mavericks Star for Brilliant Season

The Dallas Mavericks upstaged the Oklahoma City Thunder in the second round of the playoffs and will compete in the Western Conference Finals. Luka Doncic and P.J. Washington may have played key roles in the team getting there, but Kyrie Irving‘s brilliance also can’t be forgotten. And so, on the latest episode of ‘The Stephen A Smith Show,’ the host sang the veteran guard’s praises, before Hall of Famer Kevin Garnett joined right in, saying,

“Kyrie walks about with the Kobe spirit. I don’t know if you feel that… You know what you’re looking at, you know what you are looking for… You’ll see a lot of being in Kyrie right now. He’s calm, he’s confident, he’s leading, he ain’t got a bunch of extra stuff with him. He’s been about basketball. I love his peace… We all go through a process and go through a growth. And now we’re seeing a mature Kyrie that is electrifying.”

As Garnett aptly explained, Irving, who left the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2017 to escape LeBron James’ shadow, has had no trouble sharing the spotlight with Doncic. He has been locked in on defense and answered his team’s call when they needed him on offense.

Per Statmuse, he is one of only eight players averaging more than 20 points per game and boasting a defensive rating of under 114 in these playoffs. This impact on both ends of the floor is one of the primary reasons for the Mavericks’ success this season. In fact, this sudden improvement on defense has even seemed to baffle a lot of his opposition in the postseason.

The team needs him to continue playing at the same level against Anthony Edwards and the Minnesota Timberwolves in the Conference Finals, and Garnett for one, is beyond confident he will do it.

Kevin Garnett gives the Mavericks the edge in the Western Conference Finals

Mandatory Credit: Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports

Anthony Edwards’ rise has been the standout story of the ongoing playoffs. The young guard has been instrumental in leading the Timberwolves to their first Western Conference Finals appearance in 20 years.

But as impressive as the 22-year-old star has been, Kevin Garnett believes Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving won’t be fazed by his energy. On the Stephen A. Smith Show, the Hall of Famer claimed,

“I feel like he’s been the alpha of every series he’s been in. And I don’t know if Ant-Man can out-alpha Luka and Kyrie.”

Doncic and Irving are two of the most skilled players in the NBA and can go toe-to-toe against any player with the ball in their hands. Edwards would willingly take either player as his defensive assignment and the Mavericks duo would welcome the challenge.

So, far, Edwards is expected to primarily guard Kyrie Irving. Does the young superstar have what it takes to stifle the Mavs guard? Or will ‘Uncle Drew’ embarrass him like he has done to so many others in these playoffs?

Post Edited By:Tonoy Sengupta

About the author

Jay Mahesh Lokegaonkar

Jay Mahesh Lokegaonkar


Jay Lokegaonkar is a basketball journalist who has been following the sports as a fan 2005. He has worked in a slew of roles covering the NBA, including writer, editor, content manager, social media manager, and head of content since 2018. However, his primary passion is writing about the NBA. Especially throwback stories about the league's iconic players and franchises. Revisiting incredible tales and bringing scarcely believable stories to readers are one his main interests as a writer.

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