Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving called out Nassir Little over a play that left him injured. In the fourth quarter of the Nets and Portland Trail Blazers game, Irving was going after a loose ball when Little ran up behind him and dove for the ball.
“Just one of those bad plays, you know. I tried to get out of the way, but I just thought that was just, it was unnecessary for him to dive that far away from the ball. I was just trying to get out of the way,” Irving said, per Complex.
Irving finished the game with 22 points but that wasn’t enough as the Trail Blazers won 114-108. After the game, Traik Blazers head coach Chauncey Billups spoke extremely highly of Irving. His shot-making is incredible," Billups said.
"He's a better passer than people give him credit for. He's obviously a willing teammate. He's not just all about Kyrie. He passes the ball. He's a champion. He brings championship pedigree to the table. I think he hit maybe the biggest shot that I ever seen in NBA Finals history, that I seen.
"So he brings all of those things to you and now without him, what a luxury, you still have two guys [in Kevin Durant and James Harden] that have been the MVP in this game and have carried teams a long, long way. So they do a really good job of playing well together, when they're all three together, they know how to delegate their roles as good as anybody that I've seen.
So it's a very unique situation, obviously, they're figuring it out."
Irving appreciated the Billups praise
“I definitely appreciate the praise and I definitely agree that my skill level at this point in my career deserves that recognition," Irving said.
"But the work never stops. Understanding that coming from a lot of our OG's that we call in our league that have built this brotherhood, that have built this culture, it's incredible to hear that they have that high praise, but like I said in the beginning it's just more added motivation and to continue to prove it."
Billups also weighed in on Irving only playing road games for the Nets. “I just think it's going to be tough," Billups said. "Obviously, when you got the two dudes that they have [in Durant and Harden] minus Kyrie, there's a chance that it can work anyway ...
they're doing a good job of just kind of understanding and knowing that they're almost going to be like two different teams. When Ky is there, and when he's not. And the good luxury that they have is that they can be a great team -- both teams are great teams."