The NBA announced today that Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving has been named the Eastern Conference Player of Week for games played Monday, March 9, through Sunday, March 15. This marks the second time this season Irving has earned Player of the Week accolades, as well as the fourth time in his career. It is also the 48th time in team history a Cavs player has won the award.
Irving led Cleveland to a perfect 3-0 record this past week, averaging a team-high 37.3 points on .633 (38-60) shooting from the field, including .867 (13-15) from the three-point line, .885 (23-26) from the foul line, 4.0 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 2.3 steals in 38.7 minutes per game. No other player in the East averaged more than 30.0 points besides Irving, who led the NBA in points per game, total points (112) and tied for first in field goals made (38) this past week. He helped Cleveland become the only NBA team to win three road games during the week, which included wins over two Western Conference opponents that were at least 15 games over .500 entering the game. Among the East, Irving ranked first in points per game (37.3), first in three-point percentage (.867, min. 3 3FGA), and second in free throws made (23).
Irving shot 12-13 from three-point range over the last two games, which is the third-highest three-point shooting percentage (92%) over a span of two games in NBA history (min. 10 3FGM), behind only Brent Price (10-10 3FG in January 1996) and Terry Mills (13-14 3FG in December 1996). Irving also had a stretch of 11 consecutive three-pointers made without a miss in those last two wins, tying the Cavs franchise record (Delonte West, Jan. 9-Feb. 22, 2009). (Elias Sports Bureau)
The 6-3 guard started off the week by leading the Cavs to a 127-94 win at Dallas on March 10 after tallying 22 points, five rebounds, five assists and two steals in 35 minutes. Two nights later, he set a franchise record, career high and NBA season high with 57 points on 20-32 (.625) shooting, including a perfect 7-7 from the three-point line, 10-10 from the foul line, three rebounds, five assists and four steals in 47 minutes of a 128-125 overtime win at San Antonio on March 12. In the win, he scored nine points in the final minute of regulation, including the game-tying three-pointer at the buzzer, followed by 11 more points in the extra frame. Irving closed out the week with a game-high 33 points on 12-15 (.800) shooting from the field, including 5-6 (.833) from deep, four rebounds and four assists in 35 minutes of the Cavs' 123-108 victory at Orlando on March 15.
On the season, Irving has appeared in 63 games (all starts) with averages of 22.2 points on .474 shooting from the field, 3.2 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 1.5 steals in 37.2 minutes per game. He is the highest scoring point guard in the Eastern Conference and ranks third among all NBA point guards at 22.2 points per game (9th overall in NBA). He is also shooting a team-high .417 from the three-point line, the eighth-best mark in the league, and is the only player with two 50-point performances this season. Irving and the Central Division-leading Cavs (43-25) are an NBA-best 24-5 since January 15.
With Irving winning player of the week twice this season and LeBron James earning it three times, this marks the first time in Cavaliers history that two different players won the award multiple times in a single season. Anthony Davis of the New Orleans Pelicans was named the Western Conference Player of the Week.