Blog Entry

Byron Scott calls out Kyrie Irving's defense

Posted on: January 23, 2012 10:46 am
Edited on: January 24, 2012 12:08 pm
Posted by Royce Young

Playing point guard in the NBA isn't easy. Especially if you're rookie.

You've already got enough to worry about like setting up teammates, creating scoring opportunities and picking when to get your own. And that's before worrying about the other end.

Which seems to be a bit of an issue with Cavs rookie Kyrie Irving. He's forgetting that other end. Via
[Byron] Scott met with his rookie point guard Saturday in Atlanta to discuss the youngster's lax defense, which has been a source of consternation for the coach since the season started. In his most pointed comments to date, Scott said Irving's minutes won't increase until the No. 1 overall draft pick elevates his defensive intensity.


If Watson can, as Scott said, "go around [Irving] like he was standing still," imagine what trouble Rose or other elite point guards will cause him.

"You are going to run into a guy every night that can play and if you are not ready or you're lazy or you're just not into it, you are going to get eaten up," Scott said. "When he starts playing better defense and playing at the pace I want him at -- getting the ball up and down the floor the way he's capable of doing -- then his minutes will increase."

That's not sugarcoating it. That's coming after your rookie pretty hard. Which is often what guys need. They need to be told that yeah, it's great you're scoring and passing but there are two parts to this game. And if you're only going to play one, then you're not going to play at all.

Byron Scott has always been a bit tougher on guards to play defense because it's part of who he is. He was a good defender himself and approaches the game with the mind that playing good defense comes first.

Irving is obviously the future of the Cavs and Scott just wants him maximizing his potential, on both ends. Scott wants him pushing the ball, playing free and creating, but he also wants him defending. When you're getting ragged on because C.J. Watson tore you up, like Scott said, what happens when Rose is healthy next time?


Since: Jan 15, 2012
Posted on: January 24, 2012 11:51 pm

Byron Scott calls out Kyrie Irving's defense

The outline of the blob was a pretty accurate description of irvings game.  I dont think Scott is berading him hes just tellin him a hard truth.  And the truth is all the greats can come up w some kind of defense!!  Rondo and Rose are 2 great examples.  Ya the kids a rookie so you have to balance the criticism with some props.  Of course this kid doesnt seem to suffer from a lack of confidence, so scott is just knockin him down a peg.  He has done a great job offensively but he could turn the ball over less which is probaly what made his defense stand out so much against the bulls!! Cuz Watson was swipin the ball and takin it downcourt easy peasy with little resistance from kyrie! Anyway the kids talented, hes just gotta D up.  And ur right pdmagic, scott is trying to push him to be better.  Its hard to nurture a player when hes makin 10 times more $ than you and is on a losing team so callin him out might help!!

Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: January 23, 2012 3:54 pm

Byron Scott calls out Kyrie Irving's defense

It's a pity there aren't more coaches willing to demand a high level of effort from players. It's a bigger shame there aren't a handful of GM's that will stand behind a coach like that. I only wish that Scott had enough talent on the Cleveland roster to compete...he doesn't, and maybe that's why he'll be allowed to demand hustle...the Cavs have no stars to refuse.       

Since: Jan 29, 2009
Posted on: January 23, 2012 11:26 am

Byron Scott calls out Kyrie Irving's defense

This is a great move by Byron Scott because Kyrie respects him as a coach and knows that Byron wants him to become a great point guard in the NBA.  Irving has shown he is great on the offensive end of the court but there have been quite a few times when the opposing point guard drives right past him on defense.  If Irving can pick up his defensive intensity and get more minutes on the court his stats should get even better.

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