Iguodala chooses Kyrie over Steph for last-second shot: ‘It’s not even close’

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Andre Iguodala — who played alongside Stephen Curry on the Golden State Warriors for eight seasons — admitted that he would pick Dallas Mavericks guard Kyrie Irving over Curry to take the last shot with the game on the line.


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“Kyrie Irving, it’s not even close,” Iguodala said. “For the last-second shot, I’m going with Kyrie. You’re talking about fear factor at any given moment or for like that moment, Kyrie.”

The 40-year-old explained his reasoning.

“With Steph, I think he’s shown, at least proven, to teams that you can double him and if you can just try to get the ball out of his hands, then I guess that’s the way to combat him,” Iguodala said. “But with Kyrie, he’s just so good. You can’t get the ball out of his hands. Allen Iverson said Kyrie was the best ball-handler in NBA history. And I’ve been told that I was crazy for saying that. But with Kyrie, you talk about fear factor, you ask anybody in the league, that’s a scary guy to see.”

Iguodala knows as well as anyone that Irving has a reputation for being a clutch player. After all, Irving hit a 3-pointer in Game 7 of the 2016 NBA Finals against Iguodala and the Warriors to give the Cavaliers a three-point lead with under a minute to play.

Irving’s bomb from deep helped Cleveland earn a four-point victory over the Warriors — who were fresh off a regular season in which they won a record 73 games — in the deciding Game 7. During the championship series, Irving averaged 27.1 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game on 46.8 percent shooting from the floor, 40.5 percent from 3-point range and 93.9 percent from the charity stripe.

Iguodala, on the other hand, averaged 9.1 points, 6.3 rebounds and 4.1 assists while shooting 46.6 percent from the field and 30.4 percent from deep in the 2016 NBA Finals.

After falling to the Cavaliers in the NBA Finals thanks in part to Irving’s clutch shot in Game 7, Iguodala’s Warriors got the better of Irving and Cleveland in the 2017 NBA Finals.

The Warriors eliminated the Cavaliers in five games in the championship series, with their one loss coming in Game 4, when Cleveland scored a whopping 137 points as a team and Irving accounted for 40 of them.

Fast forward to the current day, and Iguodala has retired from the NBA after a 19-year career, while Irving is far removed from his days as a member of the Cavaliers. His last season in Cleveland came during the 2016-17 campaign.

Irving is currently in his second season with the Mavericks organization and is averaging 25.7 points, 5.1 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game while shooting 49.2 percent from the floor and 42.2 percent from 3-point range in 39 games played (all starts) thus far in the 2023-24 regular season.

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Jesse is a sports journalist with extensive experience covering the NBA. He has worked as a staff writer at SB Nation’s CelticsBlog and The Knicks Wall.