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Austin Rivers On The Day Kyrie Irving Arrived

What a cool story this is

New Orleans Hornets v Cleveland Cavaliers
CLEVELAND, OH - FEBRUARY 20: Kyrie Irving #2 of the Cleveland Cavaliers drives to the hoop against Austin Rivers #25 of the New Orleans Hornets at The Quicken Loans Arena on February 20, 2013 in Cleveland, Ohio.
Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images

There was a point when Kyrie Irving just exploded on the recruiting scene, but honestly, we never knew the full story. Turns out it’s pretty great.

Austin Rivers is our narrator here. He was at a Deron Williams Skill Academy that was held in New Jersey and Kyrie Irving, who was a nobody then, walked in.

And to hear Rivers tell it, once he started to play, jaws dropped: “He comes into camp and I’m not going to say names. But I remember guys saying, ‘Who the f*** is this guy? Why is he here?’ ‘Cause there’s only like 20 of us. It was a very intimate camp. So we do 1-on-1 drills… Sam, he starts wearing out everybody. Everybody was like ‘Who the f***?’ Mind you, we never heard of... I’ve never heard of this guy’s name. I’m like ‘Who the hell is this dude?’”

Irving was so impressive that Williams, who was a highly regarded NBA player at the time, jumped in to see if he was for real.

It was a pretty amazing way for his reputation to kick into high gear, but he’s justified it ever since.