LeBron James vs Kyrie Irving: The Rookie Year

The results of this comparison aren't quite what you'd expect.

James LeBeauby James LeBeau

Kyrie Irving, the Cleveland Cavaliers second number 1 draft pick this past decade, comes into the Cavalier franchise with some pretty big shoes to fill. Those shoes belong to the former number 1 draft pick that Cleveland had, LeBron James. James, practically since birth it seems, has been the golden child of the NBA and with the exception of recent mood shifts against him, has been it's go-to guy for bringing in fans.

A talented athlete without par in that regards, LeBron left a legacy at Cleveland that nobody thinks, or expects, Irving to fill. The thing about that, however, is that the 19 year old Irving is actually exceeding the 'King' at this stage of his career, when compared to LeBron at this stage.

As hard as that is to fathom, below is the comparison of the two athletes at nearly the identical point in each of their young careers. For LeBron, these are his stats after 22 games in the NBA. For Irving, it's 23. By no means does this represent what the finished product of both their careers are going to reflect but just for now, these numbers may surprise you.

They did me.

 

By the Numbers: Irving vs LeBron

Field Goal %

Edge: Irving. His 49.2% average edges out LeBron's 39.9%

 

3-point %

Edge: Irving. His 41.3% edges out LeBron's 31.6%

 

FT %

Edge: Irving. His 83% edges out LeBron's 71.7%

 

Assists

Edge: LeBron. His 139 edges out Irving's 117

 

Turnovers

Edge: Irving. He has the fewer TO with 73 to the Kings 80

 

Points Per Game

Edge: Irving. Edges LeBron with his 18 ppg to his 16.8

 

The Early Winner: Kyrie Irving

Irving is showing, in the early going, that he is more than capable of doing for this team what LeBron did for the Cavs when he came to the pro's. Irving has also shown a flair for late game heroics, something that James has shied away from his whole career.

Like I said before, though, this may be nothing more than some interesting facts at this stage of the game but the numbers don't lie.

And neither will the future, which is pretty bright for the newest young Cavs star.

 

Photo Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS