Duke will seek redemption against UNC

It’s a safe bet that Kyrie Irving will be looking for the next TV as soon as the Nets’ next game ends.

Irving’s alma mater Duke will look to add another game to retiring coach Mike Krzyzewski’s career by beating rivals North Carolina in the Final Four on Saturday night. North Carolina spoiled Krzyzewski’s last home game. This will be her first ever NCAA tournament meeting.

“The coach’s legacy isn’t necessarily at stake, but the way they came across at Coach K’s last home game at Cameron Indoor left a bad taste,” Irving recalled Thursday after the Nets released a thriller in the overtime lost 120-119 to the Milwaukee Bucks.

“I think there will be a bit of a redeeming attitude. I know the guys are excited for this opportunity to really redeem Coach K and the program, but I don’t want to put too much pressure on them. It’s another game for them to really show who they are and play as a team.”

Irving played 11 games for Duke during an injury-plagued freshman season in 2010-11 before turning pro, but he has remained close to Krzyzewski through shared experiences with Team USA. The Nets meet the Hawks at 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Duke-UNC is scheduled for 8:49 p.m.

Kyrie Irving
Kyrie Irving
NY Post: Charles Wenzelberg

“When he first recruited me at age 16, 17 I thought the guy was brilliant. But I thought he was a little crazy: the way he approached things and the way he got people to buy in,” Irving said.

“Back then, I was just a selfish little kid at St. Patrick High School in Elizabeth, NJ. He comes to my house and makes everyone smile, and I’m like, ‘This guy must be either crazy or incredibly charming.’ He is both. That was what I needed from a competitive coach to really bring out the best in me.”

Irving said Krzyzewski’s legacy is defined by his work ethic and the way he has taken care of his family, former players and the community.

“He’s going to keep building on it,” Irving said. “By being in this game for years, he has impacted so many lives. I’m just grateful to be one of these guys. He is more than just a coach to me and countless others.” Duke will seek redemption against UNC


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