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Kyrie Irving wins 2013 Foot Locker Three-Point Contest

Feb 16, 2013, 11:49 PM EDT

Foot Locker Three-Point Contest Getty Images

HOUSTON — Kyrie Irving is your 2013 Three-Point Contest champion, besting Matt Bonner in the final round by a score of 23-20 to take home the title.

“It feels good,” Irving said afterward. “Add it to the résumé. MVP for Rising Stars, and now Three‑Point Shoot Out champion.”

The first round featured largely mediocre performances, with no one reaching the 20-point mark in scoring. Bonner had the opening round high score by finishing with 19.

Irving lit it up in the final round, however, putting on an electrifying shooting display by knocking down 17 of his first 18 shots.

“I feel like I was a dark house in this competition,” Irving said. “I just wanted to go out and prove a point that I was one of the premiere shooters out here with all these guys.  Steve Novak and Matt Bonner, I never thought I’d beat those guys.”

It was more than just about personal satisfaction for Irving this weekend; it was about proving himself to a national audience. He first made his mark during the Rising Stars Challenge on Friday by taking apart Brandon Knight in a one-on-one battle late in the game, and followed it up with Saturday night’s stellar performance.

“This weekend was just basically about earning everybody’s respect and getting a chance for people to see me that don’t usually see me; we’re not nationally televised,” Irving said. “This weekend [was to] show my face to the fans and get everybody acclimated to my face in the league.”

Irving executed that plan to perfection during each of the weekend’s first two nights. He’ll have one final shot to show what he can do when he makes his first All-Star game appearance on Sunday, but no matter what happens in that one, he’s already feeling humbled by all that he’s accomplished in the middle of just his second NBA season, and admitted he spends time thinking about how quickly it’s all come together.

“Sometimes,” Irving said, when asked if he’s ever surprised by his success. “I just realize when I’m alone and I’m watching SportsCenter or NBA TV or something like that. It’s a surreal moment; I do have some surreal moments at times. It’s a blessing, and an honor to be recognized as one of the great players in the league.”

  1. baymac408 - Feb 17, 2013 at 12:03 AM

    Shout out to Steph Curry for representing the WARRIORS!! Kyrie was super wet!

    • kavika6 - Feb 17, 2013 at 2:34 AM

      Yeah, good job getting the second worst score. So over-rated.

  2. kb2408 - Feb 17, 2013 at 12:57 AM

    This kid is rapidly becoming the best point guard in the league. Not there yet, but awfully close.

  3. freemantowilliams - Feb 17, 2013 at 12:58 AM

    I really hope this guy doesn’t have major health or off the court issues in his life. I’ve said it time and time again that I think he has a chance to be one of the greats in the league. Dan Gilbert if you’re reading this, don’t screw up again. Make sure you get a couple mores stars around this guy.

    • daddyghi - Feb 17, 2013 at 8:36 AM

      i doubt it… dan is an effd up owner..

    • tampajoey - Feb 17, 2013 at 3:36 PM

      @freemantowilliams – Fans like you don’t really have a clue what you’re talking about. The Cavs under Dan Gilbert’s ownership were consistently over the salary cap and had one of the highest payrolls in the NBA while Lebron was in Cleveland. Dan Gilbert’s spending money was never a problem. Expand your NBA mind beyond no-substance media rag small-market bashing ESPN and maybe you’ll learn the facts.

      • freemantowilliams - Feb 17, 2013 at 10:11 PM

        @tampajoey – LOL who cares if you spend a bunch of money.My post said nothing about spending money. I dont want to have to use the NFL as an example but im going to. Ask Jerry Jones if a bunch of money wins you the big one. Its about finding the right players to complement your superstars or in Mr. Gilberts superstar. Moe Williams or Antwan Jamison or even a high mileage Shaq were not the answer. Fans like me who idolize these athletes and grew up wanting to be just like them know a lot more than you think. BTW i dont watch espn unless theres a FSU football game on. I dont know the exact amount of years but lebron was there for a long time and they couldnt find the right players to pair with him. Look, all I’m saying is there are guys out there to be traded for and the cavs are pretty much sitting on there hands waiting for something to happen. Speights and Ellington arent going to do it.

  4. halohonk - Feb 17, 2013 at 1:30 AM

    A point guard who can shoot. Sounds like Steve Nash about 15 years ago. Trade Dwight Howard, Steve Blake for this guy. Get it done Mitch.

    • slowclyde86 - Feb 17, 2013 at 5:29 AM

      Why not ask for Thompson, Zeller Waiters and three firsts from the Cavs as well? There is absolutely no way the Cavs would ever trade him.

    • omniusprime - Feb 17, 2013 at 8:44 AM

      No trade Ancient Trash Nash and Steve Flake for Kyrie Irving, we need the big man at center.

      • scalfor3 - Feb 17, 2013 at 1:38 PM

        Why the hell would Cleveland even consider that trade? Believe it or not, they aren’t a Lakers farm system.

  5. thekingdave - Feb 17, 2013 at 2:27 AM

    @halohonk

    Hahahahahahahahaha

  6. cj1403 - Feb 17, 2013 at 2:43 AM

    Why would the Cavs trade their franchise player and arguably top 3 pg in the league for an injured drama queen who can’t handle pressure and an end of the bench pg. God! Laker fans are so delusional!!!

    • omniusprime - Feb 17, 2013 at 8:47 AM

      This is the great young point guard the Lakers are looking for, and all we got was Ancient Trash Nash. Trash Nash has been pathetic as a Laker, he is the biggest Faker on the team followed closely by Steve Flake. With these two deadbeats at point guard the Lakers will never win a championship.

      Trade Trash Nash and Steve Flake for Kyrie Irving!!!

  7. rickyspanish - Feb 17, 2013 at 4:28 AM

    Ryan Anderson’s got a smooth looking shot.

  8. 13arod - Feb 17, 2013 at 7:48 AM

    Ryan anderson rushed his shoot he could beat kyle irving if he doesn’t rush his shoot

  9. brotherlove2012 - Feb 17, 2013 at 9:15 AM

    Trollin’ … Trollin’ …. Trollin’ … lol

  10. ranoversquarells - Feb 17, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    I like it when dark houses win …

  11. jamesfield74 - Feb 17, 2013 at 4:59 PM

    Only made sweeter by the fact Reggie Miller said he couldn’t possibly win. Next time let his sister run commentary, at least she is credible.

  12. clevelandschronic2 - Feb 17, 2013 at 5:27 PM

    Tampajoey +1. I love how these idiots bash gilbert for everything. Every word you typed is facts yet all these cleveland haters cant comprehend because ESPN didnt report it. Know the facts before you losers b**ch about gilbert as an owner.

    • tampajoey - Feb 17, 2013 at 6:20 PM

      Right on man!

      • freemantowilliams - Feb 17, 2013 at 10:36 PM

        Wrong. not trying to bash gilbert at all. All im saying is you had the best player on the planet and couldnt win the big one. Second tier free agents arent gonna cut it. It is what it is

  13. clevelandschronic2 - Feb 17, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    Again u have it wrong it was ferrys dumb drafting and trades that made it impossible to pay the talent. This is the same gm who turned down an amare for jj hickson trade. So we had to settle for the old overpaid n washed up shaqs and jamisons of the world. Plus its been known lebron didnt try to recruit anyone to cleveland. Not too much you can blame gilbert for besides leaving ferry in charge and the letter(which i loved but knew wasnt realistic).

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