Kyrie Irving and Nets look to rebound after 'two humbling losses' to Cavs

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Colin Martin
·2 min read
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Kyrie Irving close up dribbling
Kyrie Irving close up dribbling

Nets point guard Kyrie Irving made his return to the team on Wednesday night, scoring 37 points in a 147-135 2OT loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers, and then followed that up with a 38-point performance in Friday's loss.

Despite his success scoring the ball, Irving was still disappointed with the team losing both games to the Cavs.

"Whatever we have to do moving forward, like I said this was two humbling losses," Irving said. "We come into Cleveland. The trade happened, and we're playing against guys that know us very well. And they added value tonight, and they added value the other night, and rightfully so. Cleveland played well, they played with a chip on their shoulder, they had something to prove.

"Definitely would have enjoyed a win on my tribute night, or a night coming back, but that didn't happen and Collin Sexton was a hometown hero. Nothing but proud of him, and he played well. And now we lost tonight's game, back-to-back. Now what are we gonna do? Nothing more but to pick ourselves up out there as competitors, go home, talk about it. And now we play in less than 24 hours. So I'm looking forward to the challenge with my teammates."

Irving and the Nets couldn't find a way to slow down the University of Alabama guard, as Sexton scored 42 points on Wednesday night and then followed that up with 25 points and nine assists on Friday night.

The Nets had high expectations for the season even before they traded for James Harden. Irving understands that, and looks forward to developing with the team the rest of the season.

"We just stay patient and stay rooted in what we got going on," Irving said. "Big changes that have happened in the last few weeks, so we just take out time. We know what the outside world expects of us. That's gonna happen. Those ups and downs are gonna happen. One day we're great, next day we're not.

"That's just the luxury being in a great business such as this, and I say that very sarcastically. But I'm grateful to be teammates with these guys, and continue to develop. That's what I'm looking forward to."

Harden has appeared to fit right in with the Nets, averaging 29 points, 12.7 assists, and 9.3 rebounds per game in just three contests. He's ready to take on a strong Miami Heat team on Saturday after the two losses in Cleveland.

"Tomorrow we got another chance to get better," Harden said. "I'm sure coach will have some film for us pre-game. Miami is another great team, especially in the Eastern Conference. We'll have to figure it out. I think if we're engaged and we have each other's back defensively, getting rebounds, we'll have a chance in any game."