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File, Associated Press
FILE - This March 18, 2011, file photo shows Duke guard Kyrie Irving moving the ball against Hampton in the second half of a West Regional NCAA tournament second round college basketball game, in Charlotte, N.C. Irving is leaving Duke after one season to enter the NBA draft. Coach Mike Krzyzewski said in a statement issued Wednesday, April 6, 2011, by the school that Irving plans to hire an agent, ending his college career.

RALEIGH, N.C. — Kyrie Irving's jump to the NBA after one season at Duke had more to do with his dream than his toe.

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Speaking during a teleconference Thursday, the point guard says the toe injury that kept him out for 3½ months "wasn't a big factor that played into" the decision to turn pro.

Irving jammed his right big toe Dec. 4 and didn't play again until the NCAA tournament. His college career consisted of only 11 games, during which he averaged 17.5 points for the Blue Devils.

Irving says if the injury really were a concern, "I wouldn't have come back for the NCAA tournament when I did."

Instead, he called the NBA "my ultimate dream" and says being "such a high pick at such a young age" was impossible to pass up.