While a herd of about 20 reporters swarmed around Kyrie Irving late Saturday night, C.J. Miles packed up his belongings while singing an old yet familiar tune — with new lyrics.
"Sometimes I dream, that he is me … like Ky. I like to be like Ky."
Miles' song, of course, is in reference to the old hit Gatorade jingle about Michael Jordan. The fact Irving has now hit five game-winning shots before he can celebrate any of them with an alcoholic drink is rather staggering.
"He's special, man," Miles said. "He does everything that needs to be done in this league and he's 20 years old. I couldn't even hand him a beer if I wanted to. Think about that."
Irving's dramatic 3-pointer in the game's final second Saturday night was the fifth game-winner of his young career. While the term "game-winning shot" is an arbitrary term, and therefore records are sparse, Irving is in rare air.
He has played 85 career games and already has two game-winners with one second or less remaining. The only other player since the 2002-03 season to have two such game-winning baskets through 85 career games is the Sacramento Kings' Tyreke Evans, according to STATS.
Stretch it out to the final three seconds, and Irving is credited with three game-winning shots, according to STATS. Since their records only date back to 2002-03, they don't have any record of Michael Jordan's career. But LeBron James didn't hit a game-winner like that until March 22, 2006 — well into his third season in the league.
"He's got big coolness," Cavs coach Byron Scott said. "He's still a kid. He's just having fun. He's just enjoying himself, playing at an unbelievable high level right now."
As the reporters swarmed Irving, he took the moment to grasp his rightful place atop the organization. Throughout his rookie season, Irving shied away from the label of leader. Not anymore.
Irving embraces role as leader of Cavs
Akron Beacon Journal | Jan 28