Kyrie Irving took the court for the first time since Game 1 of the NBA Finals on Sunday against the Philadelphia 76ers. Understandably, the Cleveland Cavaliers’ point guard was a bit rusty during his brief playing stint immediately following the opening tip. After returning to the game, though, Irving remained aggressive and finally notched his first points of the season early in the second quarter – a pair that could be the easiest of his career.
Despite an early players-only meeting and the lengthy absences of many key contributors, Cleveland has clearly established itself as the class of the East over the first two months of 2015-16. Its 17-7 record tops the conference and is third in the NBA overall.
And even if Irving doesn’t immediately regain the form that makes him such a devastating offensive presence, it’s safe to say the Cavaliers will be much better going forward with him in the lineup – even should they continue struggling with the lowly 76ers this afternoon.