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January 15, 2012

NBA's no-hand check rule makes ex-Duke point guard Kyrie Irving devastating

            Three of the last four No. 1 overall picks in the NBA have been point guards – Derrick Rose, John Wall and Kyrie Irving (who shows up with the Cleveland Cavaliers to play the Charlotte Bobcats Monday afternoon).
                Previous to Rose, it had been 11 years since a guard was taken first overall, and that was Allen Iverson.
                That’s how dramatically the NBA’s strict enforcement of the no-hand check rule on dribblers has changed the game the past few seasons.
                Chicago Bulls point guard Rose was the NBA’s most valuable player last season because no one can keep his feet between Rose and the rim without some kind of pushing or holding. You either watch him score, or foul him, or give help defensively that leaves all those other Bulls wide-open for dunks or spot-up jump shots.
                Already a similar dynamic is starting with Irving’s presence in Cleveland. He’s as productive as any rookie, averaging 17 points, 5.1 assists and 47 percent shooting from the field. The Cavaliers average nearly eight 3-pointers made a game because Irving’s dribble-penetration skews the opposing defense, leaving so many shooters open.
                We hardly saw Irving in his single college season at Duke, due to injury. But there’s a rare gift in his combination of ball-handling and change-of-direction without losing speed.
                “He’s got some things he can do with the ball that I’ve never seen anyone else do. He’s got that ball on a string,’’ said the Bobcats’ Gerald Henderson, another Blue Devil who’s played in numerous pick-up games with Irving in Durham.

    “He’s special, and that’s why he was the No. 1 pick…His agility is unique, for sure.’’

Posted by Observer Sports on January 15, 2012 at 02:07 PM | Permalink


Kemba Walker looked good last night.

Posted by: BG | Jan 15, 2012 5:15:13 PM

I was hoping we would trade up to get this guy, people were saying he's not worth it, but i thought he would be real good in the end. i dont think he will save Cleveland or anything, but i think with him and another good pick next year, that the Cavs could be ok.

Posted by: Mitchell | Jan 15, 2012 7:21:46 PM

I believe he will resurrect Cleveland.. remember how bad they were last year? They are sitting at .500 right now I believe. A little help around him and who knows...

Posted by: Charlie | Jan 15, 2012 9:00:58 PM

Is this the Cleveland Observer? Thanks for cheering me up! I just realized things could be worse! I could be living in Cleveland!

Posted by: joe cool | Jan 15, 2012 9:49:12 PM

Hey jc...we play them next. Seems relevant to me.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Jan 15, 2012 11:09:47 PM

Augustin and walker are both just as agile. They just arent as big and dont get as many calls as derrick rose.

Both have looked great the past 2 nights. Hope that continues. Mullens too. I like diaw coming off the bench now that mullens is looking like a franchise guy. Before that, you had to start boris but dude is way better suited off the bench with this roster. Biyombo 5 blocks in 12 min friday....nuts.

Anybody that isnt optimistic about this group is off. Between mullens and augustin and walker and henderson and biyombo and thomas and white all being 25 and under. I mean mullens could really really really be something. Those kind of 7 footers dont just appear everyday. And dude is doing this much this early at age 22.....its really exciting. Easily the best trade ever giving up a conditional 2nd for that dude. Okc looks dumb for that.

Posted by: charlottean | Jan 16, 2012 1:49:05 AM

well, Kemba doesn't change direction but he'll split two defenders with crossover.
I remembered he left Monta in the dust with quickness don't lie. Kemba has leaps to get on a fastbreak so hopefully we'll see couple of dunks today.

Posted by: vinh | Jan 16, 2012 7:20:14 AM

I hope Kemba can create his celebration move like Newton because it'll be fun

Posted by: vinh | Jan 16, 2012 7:21:36 AM

Charlottean is right. Quickness only matter if you get the calls. another reason we need to playing Kemba. Needs go build his cred.

Posted by: Skip | Jan 16, 2012 8:37:41 AM

If this lineup works I wonder where Maggette will fit in when/if he comes back.

Posted by: apauldds | Jan 16, 2012 9:30:43 AM

Not even Kyrie Irving's unique driving and kick out ability could help Matt Carroll become relevant. How is he still in the league? Oh that's right, he plays for the "lets lose as much as possible" rag tag Bobcats!

Posted by: Ron | Jan 16, 2012 10:34:52 AM

Matt carroll belongs in the league just not on this team. Dude needs to be in a run and gun offense or a role like reddick with orlando, korver with chicago, etc. He is a top 15 shooter in the league. Prob top 5.

Maggette has no business in ANY role when he comes back. They should just bench him until they can find a trade partner and if they can't, amnesty in the offseason. His contract is bigger, more likely to be signed by another team, and less useful to this team than diop. And thats sad. But seriously, if he or cory higgins continue to take minutes away from our future.......it just keeps fans from being all the way in.

I have a friend who loved the hornets and basically gave up on the bobcats a few years ago. I took him to one of the games the other day and he saw cory enter the game and him being out of the loop asked "is rod higgins seriously still the gm?"

Its embarassing for the team and embarassing to the kid. Hes not THAT bad but hes also not THAT good. Nobody wins except rod in this scenario.

Posted by: charlottean | Jan 16, 2012 10:53:01 AM

So I figured out how MJ can enough money to pay free agents. Have Corey Hiiggins put up a toll booth so when everybody smokes by him we make money. The kid is so far behind the plays and when he fronts someone they just blow by him. His only points Saturday night were an awkward chuck that went in. Why is this clown getting 15 minutes and Matt Carroll is DNP

Posted by: True BBall Fan | Jan 16, 2012 3:25:58 PM

They MUST be giving the kid playing tape early on hoping that someone else will pick him up later. It just doesnt strike me as something silas would do on his own. And when williams gets back he absolutely has no business even getting a jersey. As if he ever did. Depressing to watch that kinda bs.

As for the game....mullens was off and that was the different in the outcome but 12 boards are a great sign. That guy is a franchise player. He looks more of a sure thing than ANYBODY on the roster not named augustin.

Dj had a strong 1st half and fell off 2nd. 19 Points at the half, i wish he had that killer instinct to keep going in on guys. Getguys like irving in foul trouble before they can get it going offensively. Hes too good to not step up more.

This team as a whole is very promising. I will keep saying it. Good loss? Another ping pong ball. I still say barnes, but seeing thomas play more 3 has me thinking sullinger might work just the same.

Posted by: charlottean | Jan 16, 2012 9:54:36 PM

Cleveland is a good barometer for where the cats hope to go: they lost a ton of games last season, kept the young nucleus together, added the #1 pick and now they're playing 500 ball.

Posted by: apauldds | Jan 17, 2012 9:43:16 AM

Change the name to the Carolina Bobcats? Its no secret the queen name is a loser but unknown to most the real prob is TWC Arena was built over an ancient Catawba indian burial site causing a dead spirit curse on not only the building that is haunted but any team associated with it.
The old Tyvola site was in the clear.

It may be an idea to consider building a new arena to escape this ancient curse as even changing the name wouldnt help. Thousands of bones were removed by excavators causing indian spirits to drive away fans and interest plus harrass everyone. Just stay away when the building is vacant. Its very scary. Flying objects and ghostly sounds echo 24/7.

Besides costing 500 mill the roof has collasped and replaced plus many other probs. It can only get worse as thousands of years old dead indian spirits in the other realm angered at disruption of their eternal burial grounds haunt the site 365 days a year. Shinn was forced to exit and BJ felt the curse originally. MJ's head is on the block now.

Posted by: Tiny Feather | Jan 17, 2012 9:53:59 AM

Interesting theory but the Hornets left before TWC was built. The Hive was constructed atop a landfill btw.

Posted by: apauldds | Jan 17, 2012 9:58:13 AM

Tiny Feather

I guess your evil spirit theory doesn't apply to concerts which sell out, they must like music.

Posted by: TrueBBallFan | Jan 17, 2012 11:22:36 AM

The only thing cursing the bobcats is rod higgins.

Posted by: charlottean | Jan 17, 2012 11:31:31 AM

And his spawn Corey.

Posted by: apauldds | Jan 17, 2012 12:40:56 PM

Rick good article. Question: why is Bismack Byombo not playing? Should we be concerned?

Posted by: HJ | Jan 17, 2012 1:16:55 PM

1. Charlotte Hornets once nba sells team.
2. Play DJ a ton. If they have to start magette, so be it. Kemba is the future and playing him 28-30 minutes a game maybe more off bench. We need DJ's trade value to be as high as possible. We trade him for either a high pick in next years draft or a big man. We hit big in the lottery....bam. Remember cho did this is OK city. Won durant and traded for jeff green pick later. (ray Allen). We suck this year but get Davis and Barnes through trading DJ and a future pick ...maybe package in tyrus or Byombo ?

Posted by: HJ | Jan 17, 2012 1:24:36 PM

HJ you can't be implying that Kemba is DJ's replacement. You can't be a point guard with only one hand and your head down. Kemba is Nate Robinson and nothing more.

Posted by: TrueBBallFan | Jan 17, 2012 2:40:42 PM

i would say i think he's way more than nate robinson but that's circumstantial. nate robinson gets a bad rap because of his perceived lack of seriousness. yet dude is a gamer and absolute energy guy. kemba is a little more even keeled. more serious, slightly less energy.

i want to dispute the comparison, but it's accurate as hell.

and trading augustin would be absolutely idiotic. he hasn't been completely consistent but he's been more consistent than anybody else on the team. he hasn't had many glaringly bad games. a bad game for him has been like the 8 points 8 assists the other night. or 7 points 13 assists.

10th in assists from pg's and on the list in front of him, only rubio is younger. rose being the same year, a few months younger.

12th in points. 5th in assist/turnover. surprisingly 10th in rebounds. 12th in PER. 9th in Value Added. And he's entering his prime at 24 years old. you just don't trade that.

Posted by: charlottean | Jan 17, 2012 6:08:50 PM

The difference between our point guards and kyrie irving was that irving in the last five minutes of the fourth qtr got the ball in the paint each time down the floor. He scored or drew two defenders and made an easy pass to a teammate for a layup. Our point guards didnt do this as they werent instructed to do it or cant do it . It was the difference in the game for sure..Scott played w Majic ., Silas never did.

Posted by: Ironman | Jan 18, 2012 6:56:53 AM

Gerald Wallace

Posted by: knoahtastic | Jan 19, 2012 9:17:43 AM

Shinn was driven out before the arena opened but its all relative. His Tyovola Road franchise was the most successful NBA team in the league for years after it opened.

The new one was built over torn down buildings but Trade and Tryon was the main indian crossroad trading path for 1000s of years. Legend put ancient burial grounds right off East Trade St in the area of the new arena.

A similar situation occured with old Atlanta Fulton County stadium built over an indian burial site. The Braves had the losingest team in MLB a quarter century after it opened in the mid 60s. Oddly after sending indian medicene men the spirits were appreased and Atlanta became one of the winningest. Grizzard wrote about it before his untimely death.

Posted by: redman blood | Jan 22, 2012 7:48:07 AM

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