The Dallas Mavericks made a major splash at this year’s trade deadline, landing Kyrie Irving after he requested a trade from the Brooklyn Nets. However, things haven’t gone too well since Irving joined the Mavericks, as before their win on Thursday night, he and Luka Doncic were 1-4 when sharing the floor together.
However, they earned a big-time win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday, becoming the first Mavericks teammates in franchise history to put up 40 or more points in the same game. After the victory, Irving spoke about what it felt like to earn the victory, name-dropping Doncic in the process.
“I just embraced my teammates,” Irving said via House of Highlights. “It was a hard-fought game. And we did everything to make sure we were poised down the stretch. We’re just paying attention to the game plan. There’s been a few losses over last week where we felt like they were very winnable games, and it came down to the [final] stretch. You know, three points, four points, two points. So, it was definitely a different approach tonight for us as a team because we really wanted this. I really wanted this. But I think, like I said, the last time I was sitting up here, I just had to join the party. You know, and just make sure my teammates were going to follow along. And Luka was ready for the party, I was ready for the party tonight. And it was one of those games where we had some special performances, and I’m just grateful that the work translated because it could have gone either way. We could either kind of lay down and just let things happen and kind of blame it on the refs or blame it on other things, but sitting up here every single night and not having excuses. It’s knowing we just got to respond and do what’s necessary to win ball games. So, it felt good.”
Kyrie Irving Discusses Mavericks Struggles
Dallas’ win over the 76ers comes one game after their tough loss to the Indiana Pacers. After that defeat, Irving talked about the team’s struggles, revealing a text conversation he had with his father.
“I’m human,” Irving told Sports Illustrated’s Dalton Trigg. “I would love to play well, every single night. I was just texting with my dad — my biggest fan, one of my harshest critics. But he’s always gonna keep it honest, and I appreciate that. He’s been watching me play for a long time, and he just told me to stay aggressive, and he said it looked like I was overthinking out there. And I was just telling him that we have new lineups. I’m playing with new guys out there. It’s an adjustment period. As much as I would love to play well, it doesn’t happen as often as you would like. But I think moving forward, when I can ease my own burdens or overthinking, I think things will naturally flow.”
Luka Doncic on 2-Man Game With Kyrie Irving
“I mean, yeah. The plan was to play the two[-man] game between us, but that happens, so we couldn’t,” Doncic said via the Mavericks’ official YouTube channel, explaining what went wrong in the loss. “But you know, just play off each other, or whoever’s got it going, maybe. I don’t know, we just played the two-man game.”