Up until the Celtic’s most recent game vs the Detroit Pistons, Kyrie Irving was showing signs of rust since he last played in green and white. Irving got surgery on his knee last season in March and missed the remainder of the season, including playoffs. The return of Irving and Hayward (who suffered a gruesome season-ending leg injury on opening night last year) lead to one of the most highly anticipated seasons in Celtics history.
The Celtics have the 2nd best roster in the NBA when everyone is healthy. Irving was an All-Star last year, averaging 24.4 ppg and shooting 49.1% from the field and 40.8% from three. He started on Opening Night against the 76ers with a new look, debuting the season in a headband with a mini-fro. The 76ers are another top team in the East, with the young duo of Simmons and Embiid and the true beginning of former number 1 overall pick Markelle Fultz. Although the Celtics won, Irving had a quiet night with only 7 points and going 2-14 from the field.
The struggle continued after that first night. After the first 6 games, Irving was shooting just 12.3% from field goal range. All of the talks of his return instantly changed from what he was bringing to the Celtics to what he wasn’t. The people of Boston got a little worried, no not worried we never get worried ever (ex. 28-3 lead by the Falcons). The people of Boston were curious as to what was happening with our guy. A summer full of rumors that Irving was leaving after this season, to him saying he’s staying, to more rumors that that doesn’t guarantee anything, to him looking like a backup point guard for the Orlando Magic, it was a lot for fans to process.
Luckily, all it took was a haircut for Uncle Drew to get back to his old ways. He shaved the head, lost the headband and bam he was back. Irving dropped 31 on the first night of the no-fro, contributing to the Celtics 108-105 win against a talented Pistons team. His hot-hand continued over the next couple of games as well. Irvings 29 ppg with 54.2% shooting over the last three games is definitely an improvement from his 14 ppg with 12.3% shooting from his first six.
Regardless of who is scoring how much, the Celtics are currently sitting in 4th in the East with a 6-3 record. The Raptors, Bucks, and Pacers are currently the top 3. No need to worry though, it is only a matter of time until Brad Stevens and the star-studded C’s will show everyone who really is the beast of the East.
Photos: Yard Barket