NBA news: Two-time NBA champion Isiah Thomas has showered praise on Brooklyn Nets superstar Kyrie Irving. The Detroit Pistons legend also outlined the importance of the Australian, as the Nets remain one of the favourites to win the NBA Championship this season.
The Nets boast one of the strongest teams in the NBA with Kevin Durant, James Harden, Blake Griffin and Irving part of their roster. They made it to the playoffs last season but suffered defeat against eventual champions Milwaukee Bucks in Game 7.
Although the defeat against the Bucks came as a shock to the Nets, Steve Nash’s side were without a few key players during the playoffs. Kevin Durant’s appearances were sporadic while Irving was also ruled out due to injury.
Nevertheless, they will definitely be in the hat to claim the NBA Championship this season as well. And former Pistons star Isiah Thomas believes Irving will be instrumental in guiding the Nets to the summit.
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Irving joined the Nets in 2019 and after a rather difficult first season with the team, he showed his class last campaign. The 29-year-old averaged 26.9 points 4.8 rebounds and 6.0 assists per game as the Nets stormed their way into the playoffs.
Of course, he was supported by Kevin Durant and James Harden along the way. But the big three for the Nets, rarely featured together as one of them was out injured, denying NBA fans some dazzling basketball.
NBA news: Isiah Thomas waxes lyrical on Kyrie Irving
Earlier this month, Irving was reported to be unhappy with the Nets but hit back at the media. The seven-time NBA All-Star then hit back at the reporters for misinterpreting his situation.
While speaking to BasketballNews.com, Pistons icon Isiah Thomas defended Irving’s decision to go after Wright, claiming that he has a right to hit back when the media is misrepresenting what the situation may be. Thomas also stated that Irving will be crucial for the Nets if they are to win the NBA Championship.
He recalled the time Irving won the NBA Championship with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016, during LeBron James’ second stint with the Cavs. “The LeBron James-led Cleveland Cavs that came back and beat the Golden State Warriors after they had a 73-9 season,” said Thomas
He added, That season LeBron James was off the charts in every statistical category. But the Cleveland Cavs do not win the championship without Kyrie Irving on that team.” Irving famously scored a late clutch winner in Game 7 to swing the game in favour of the Cavs.
The 12-time NBA All-Star then explained how the Nets simply cannot win a Championship without Irving.
Thomas concluded by saying, “Put me down on record. The Brooklyn Nets with the team constructed the way it currently is, cannot, and will not, win the championship if he is not there. Period.”