Sports

Kyrie Irving tells James Harden, ‘You are the purpose guard, and I’ll play capturing guard’ as Brooklyn Nets decide on roles

Because the Brooklyn Nets ‘large three’ of Kevin Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving proceed to work on constructing their on-court chemistry, Irving and Harden had a short dialog at follow this week to make clear their roles.

“We established that perhaps 4 days in the past now,” Irving mentioned after the Nets’ 134-117 win over the Golden State Warriors on Saturday. “I simply checked out him, and I mentioned, ‘You are the purpose guard, and I’ll play capturing guard.’ That was so simple as that.”

Irving described the dialog as concise and matter-of-fact.

“It is not a mystical dialog that we had,” Irving mentioned.

In Saturday’s recreation in opposition to the Warriors, Harden had 16 assists, elevating his 11.3 help per recreation common since becoming a member of the Nets in mid-January. It is probably the most assists he has dished out for the reason that 2016-17 season, when he led the league with 11.2 assists per recreation for the Houston Rockets.

“He is been taking management of the duties and doing an unbelievable job,” Irving mentioned. “It simply makes my job simpler to only exit and play free and simply make performs.”

When Harden — a multitime scoring champion — was added to the Nets’ combine, an overriding query was: Is one basketball going to be sufficient?

Harden had mentioned with head coach Steve Nash his willingness to play no matter position vital upon his arrival from Houston.

On Saturday in opposition to the Warriors, Harden, Irving and Durant scored or assisted on 100 factors for Brooklyn. Saturday marked the seventh recreation the trio performed collectively — together with final week’s matchup with the Toronto Raptors, throughout which Durant was yanked from the ground early due to the league’s coronavirus protocols.

Their file collectively is 5-2, together with the loss to the Raptors that Durant was unable to complete.

“I got here to this workforce realizing that they’ve two particular scorers on this workforce,” Harden mentioned. “Clearly, I rating after I must, however so long as I am getting everyone concerned and Ky (Irving) is getting the pictures that he desires, KD is getting the pictures that he desires, it is fairly environment friendly. Offensively is just not the issue for us, we are able to rating in bunches; it is defensively. It looks like we’re getting a rhythm as of late. We simply obtained to stick with it.”

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