The new generation of today’s star behaves nothing like the stars of old, and Kyrie Irving and Neymar are the antithesis of this. Both of these talents are looking to make their own name from under the shadows of the greats they play(ed) with.
For instance, Kyrie wants a trade away to lead his own team to a championship like his counterpart LeBron James. Likewise, Neymar completed a move away from FC Barcelona to create his own legacy from under Leo Messi. Without a doubt, the millennials of today are about creating their own path of success.
The Ups and Down of Kyrie
Point guard is the hardest position to play in the NBA today but even still, Kyrie is one of the best. If he didn’t play with LeBron, his star would still shine simply due to the nature of his play. His New York-style handles, although raised in Jersey, and effortless lay-up package makes him scintillating player to watch. Even just watching a highlight reel of his play would convince you he can be the best one day.
— ProCity Hoops™ (@ProCityHoops) August 9, 2017
Kyrie’s game is so amazing to watch that the casual fan can’t differentiate the flaws. With his polarizing dribbling skills comes the lack of point guard vision. He tends to not look up when dribbling, then over-dribble, and often takes tough looks. Also, on defense he tends to check out. While he tends to be solid on the ball, off-ball he gets lost in space and on simple back cuts.
The Ups and Down of Neymar
Neymar is a winger in soccer that is eerily similar to Kyrie. On the pitch, he’s a dribbling machine with pace to burn. Also, scoring goals comes quite easy to a talent like Neymar. His precise short passing combined with his perfectly timed quick dives to the box make him unbeatable. The Brazilian is undoubtedly top 3 player in the world but every player has flaws.
— DBN Africa (@DBNAfrica) August 10, 2017
With great power comes great responsibility. Neymar is so great that sometimes he forgets what’s most important. But when he’s determined, he plays like the best in the world. Consistency is something that could vault him past the likes of, the two best in the world, Messi and Ronaldo. Like Kyrie, his dribbling is so far skilled that he tends to over-dribble and not see his teammates. Even though it isn’t the biggest need of a winger, he doesn’t track back on defense as much as some think his speed could offer.
Similarities of Kyrie and Neymar
Both of these players’ careers are heading down similar paths. Even though Neymar is better at his sport than Kyrie is right now, their trajectories are in the same direction. One would think they see future “greatest in the world” as their potential and think a change in scenery is needed for that to happen.
Neymar already completed a move to French club Paris Saint-Germain for a world record fee of €222M($260M). His thinking is that taking a decent but underperforming team like PSG to a Champions League title would boost his career. Accomplishing a feat like that could win him a Ballon D’Or (trophy for best player in the world).
Meanwhile, Kyrie Irving has stated he wants a trade away from the Cleveland Cavaliers. The shadow of LeBron is tough for any player to create their own legacy under. But with the electricity surrounding a player like Kyrie, it’s easy to see why some fans wouldn’t mind him getting his own team. If he does get a team, winning MVP would be the most validating accomplishment outside of winning a title.
The Leading of New Generation Stars
Neymar and Kyrie Irving are exactly what the new-age millennial strives to live like. These two are examples of the changing of “The American Dream”. Instead of following the fray they want to build their own unique paths. More and more future stars will begin to go in that direction like LaVar and Lonzo Ball is doing with creating the Big Baller Brand. Expect future superstars like Zion Williamson in basketball or Vinicius Jr in soccer to be more divisive when it comes to career movement.