'Long time coming': Mavericks' Kyrie Irving savors first NBA Finals trip in seven years

Published May 31, 2024, 1:46 PMPao Ambat

It took seven long years but Kyrie Irving is back at the grandest stage that is the NBA Finals, this time with the Dallas Mavericks.

Kyrie Irving dropped 36 points, four rebounds, and five assists in Game 5.

Kyrie Irving waited seven years for this moment. 

Into his third team in the last six years since leaving the Cleveland Cavaliers, a familiar place awaits the 2016 NBA champion.  

“Long time coming,” Irving said on returning to the NBA Finals for the fourth time in his career, helping the Dallas Mavericks breeze past the Minnesota Timberwolves, 124-103, in Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals. 


Irving scored 36 points in a series-clinching road win that pushed the Mavericks to their first Finals appearance since winning the title in 2011.

For his part, Irving will be in his NBA Finals trip with the Mavs after going three straight with the Cavs from 2015-2017. 

“It has been seven long years but it also felt like the right amount of time,” the Mavericks superstar guard said.

“As a kid, that’s what you dream off. To get into the [NBA] Finals and being able to play the best of the best with the whole world watching.”

The 13-year veteran was nearly flawless for Dallas in their five-game West Finals win over the Timberwolves, averaging 27 points, four rebounds, and five assists.

“It feels great. I’ll definitely not take this moment for granted because of how hard we had to work to get here. We had to earn our spot in the NBA Finals. We had to go against great opponents and I felt that they got us [to be] better as a team,” he said.

Those squads - the LA Clippers, West no. 1 OKC Thunder and now the Timberwolves- really made a run of their money against Irving and Co.

“I had just that utmost confidence when I was going to sleep last night going, [went] in the shootaround, just[having a] feeling we’re going to play one of our best games [in the series]. I felt that way.”


The Mavericks face the Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals beginning June 7, Friday (PH Time), 8:30 a.m. It will air LIVE on One Sports, NBA TV Philippines, RPTV, and the Pilipinas Live app.