Every athlete wants to be recognized for their hard work and achievements, but not every athlete can take the credit. In today’s society where social media is king and everyone has a platform of their own, athletes who don’t have access to these sites are often left out in the cold when trying to get recognition for their feats.

The “thank you i appreciate it” is a phrase that is often used in the sports world. It is usually said after an athlete has received praise from their coach or team.

'I Definitely Appreciate the Praise and I Definitely Agree'

On January 10, Brooklyn Nets point guard Kyrie Irving scored 22 points and grabbed eight rebounds in his second game of the 2021-22 season against the Portland Trail Blazers. The Nets, however, were defeated by a final score of 114-108, dropping to 25-14.

Irving is only allowed to play on the road (save in San Francisco and against the New York Knicks at MSG) since he is not immune to COVID-19. Due to some of the weird words and acts he’s made over the years, the seven-time All-Star is one of the most contentious players in the NBA, but Blazers head coach and former Finals MVP Chauncey Billups wants people to appreciate how brilliant Irving is as a basketball player.

Kyrie Irving is the most talented point guard in NBA history, according to Chauncey Billups.

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Billups dubbed Irving the greatest talented point guard in NBA history before the Blazers beat the Nets. Uncle Drew, according to the Detroit Pistons veteran, is a once-in-a-generation guard who deserves greater respect from basketball fans and analysts.

“Kyrie is a magician, bro,” Billups remarked, according to ESPN. “He’s a must-see on television.” As someone who has played the position, I believe Kyrie is the greatest talented player in the history of the position. It’s just pure ability. There’s nothing else. It’s just pure ability. In terms of talent, I believe he is the finest I’ve ever seen at the position. So, clearly, when he’s playing, he offers you a lot.”

During his career, Billups was named to five All-Star teams and three NBA All-Star teams. By averaging 21.0 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 5.2 assists in the 2004 Finals, he led the Pistons to victory against the Los Angeles Lakers and was named Finals MVP. Although Billups isn’t a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, he is nonetheless admired by contemporary players, which is why Irving was touched by his praise.

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Irving has received a lot of flak for refusing to obtain the COVID-19 vaccination. This season, he hasn’t earned much good public attention. With that said, the former champion appreciated Billups’ words.

“I appreciate the compliment, and I feel that my talent level at this stage in my career needs to be recognized,” Irving said. “However, the labor never ends.” Understanding that coming from a lot of our “OG’s,” as we call them in our league, that have formed this brotherhood, that have developed this culture, it’s wonderful to hear such high praise, but like I said before, it’s just more additional incentive to keep proving it. That’s something I’m thankful for. Coming from him, a championship winner and championship point guard, gives me even more drive to keep writing this history with my wonderful teammates.”

Irving is a three-level scorer who is also one of the top basket finishers in NBA history. He also has exceptional ball-handling abilities. Since joining the league in 2011, the Duke product has crossed over several players, earning him the moniker “Ankletaker.”

Uncle Drew is a ball-wielding magician.

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With the Cleveland Cavaliers, Boston Celtics, and Brooklyn Nets, Irving has career averages of 22.8 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 5.7 assists. He’s been named to three NBA All-Star teams and was named MVP of the 2014 All-Star Game. The Rookie of the Year in 2011-12 can go to the hoop and finish in traffic with ease, as well as dominate from the mid-range and 3-point line. On offense, he has no flaws.

Billups stated, “His shot-making is outstanding.” “He’s a better passer than most people realize. He seems to be a willing teammate. He’s not simply interested in Kyrie. He passes the ball to another player. He’s a winner. He comes to the table with a championship pedigree. “I believe he hit the greatest shot in NBA Finals history that I’ve ever seen.”

In Game 7 of the 2016 Finals, Irving made a step-back 3-pointer over Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry to capture the Cavaliers’ first title in team history. Off the court, he’s clearly a divisive figure, but on the court, he’s one of the finest point guards in league history. He is, after all, one of just nine NBA players to shoot 50/40/90 in a single season.

RELATED: Kevin Durant Speaks Out on the Nets’ Controversial Decision to Reintroduce Kyrie Irving as a Part-Time Player: ‘It just seemed like the right thing to do,’ says the author.

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