Kyrie Irving’s comments from his postgame press conference after Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals have already been dissected 18 different ways and it hasn’t even been 24 hours since the Celtics season ended. Every time he mentioned Mike Budenholzer, Irving was really calling out Brad Stevens. Then there’s: whenever he touched on Milwaukee’s bench that was a slight at the Celtics young guys he called out for the majority of the season.
Both of those accusations could be true. But it’s hard to fully prove those claims without Irving truthfully explaining his intent behind his remarks.
However, there is one thing Irving brought up that appears to have been ignored. How that’s happened makes no sense, given it felt like Irving mentioned the matter every other regular season game. And he brought it up twice after Game 5.
Throughout the press conference, Irving had no problem complimenting the Bucks. In the course of this, Irving repeated the Bucks played like they had all year.
He first hit on it at the start of the presser while reflecting on his season.
“They showed all year why they were who they were and they were very [dominant] in this series after Game 1,” Irving said. “They played hard.”
He touched on the idea again midway through addressing the media, when asked about Milwaukee’s defense.
“They put us in some rotations, offensively and defensively, did a great job running their offense with pace, making us think out there,” Irving said. “And I think that’s one of the important lessons I’m going to take from this is just how smart our team has to be in order to be at that next level. And they did it all year. I mean, they stayed consistent, they stayed steady, they stayed relatively healthy.”
Now, to be clear: what Irving’s saying makes perfect sense on its own. But isn’t he the same guy that said all year the regular season didn’t matter? That the Celtics could flip a switch whenever they wanted? What’s with this Milwaukee “did it all year,” nonsense then?
Any athlete or team believing they can flip a switch overnight is taking a huge gamble. With the exception of some of the LeBron James-led teams over recent years, there aren’t many who underperform in the regular season and turn things around in the playoffs. However, if someone like Irving believes they can, in fact, do that, that’s fine, but stick to that theme — because now we have no idea which of his other statements are hollow.
Full article @ Kyrie Irving flip-flopped on something he preached all year after losing series to Bucks
Source: GreenStreet Blog