(By Baxie) If somebody broke my face, the very last thing that I would want to do would be to play a game of basketball. Because you see, I would have just broken my face. I would much prefer giving my face a rest and return to basketball ONLY after my face has made a full recovery—rather than play with a broken face. Last night, Kyrie Irving returned to the Celtics four days after catching an elbow from teammate, Aron Baynes last Friday against Toronto. And despite the clear protective mask that he was forced to wear, the dude still scored a team-high 25 points as the Celtics beat the Nets for their 13th consecutive win.
This, of course, not the only time that Kyrie has pulled out a great masked performance during his career. You may recall that Kyrie once scored 41 points against the Knicks after breaking his jaw in 2012 while wearing a mask made from black plastic. It was the best performance by anybody in a mask since Michael Crawford in the 1988 Broadway debut of Andrew Lloyd Weber’s Phantom of the Opera. (Which I should point out won seven Tony Awards that year including Best Musical, Best Actor, and Best Featured Actress for the inimitable, four-time Nominee, Judy Kaye in her complex role as the aging prima donna Carlotta)
Never the less, not only did Kyrie Irving drain 25 points (including two from behind the three-point line) but the Celtics continued their winning streak to 13 games. The win puts them ahead of Detroit by two full games in the Eastern Conference AND give them the best record in the NBA. In fact, the Celtics are so hot right now that even Golden State head coach, Steve Kerr told reporters last night that they are the “team of the future” in the East and will likely be awesome for years to come! Of course, we’ll see how Steve feels about that tomorrow night when Golden State faces the Celtics at the TD Garden while they go for their 14th straight. And while that game may not have the same level of poignancy and pathos as Weber’s original Broadway production—it’ll still be worth watching never the less.