The white paint on the doorway to Kyrie Irving's childhood bedroom is dotted with black dashes and dates, each aligned to detail the incremental growth he's enjoyed since Oct. 31, 2003. At the top, marked off at 6 feet 4 inches, an arrow points to his goal:
Dad - I Wish!
He stands next to the makeshift tape measure, eyeing the shrinking space between his head and the end line.
"Wow," Irving says, tracing his path with his right index finger. "Came a long way."
Forever measuring himself against Drederick, his father, Kyrie, who stands 6-foot-3-1/2, surpassed his dad, a 45-year-old bond analyst at Thomson Reuters, on the court two years ago. In a game of one-on-one at a South Orange, N.J. park, he extended a string of made baskets into a 16-0 stretch, elevating over his father or faking, then finishing with duck-under layups. Unable to compete, the father, the former all-time scorer at Boston University and Rucker MVP, flailed futilely, their genetic sequence reversed.