BROOKLYN -- On Sunday, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry will return to Boston, with Pierce, a 16-year veteran, playing against the Celtics, in Boston, as an opposing player for the first time in his career.
After the Nets defeated the Dallas Mavericks on Friday night, their ninth win in their last 10 games, Pierce and Garnett met with the media to talk about their pending return to Boston and the emotions that, according to both players, haven't quite begun to sink in. Considering their tone and reflection, however, it shouldn't be too hard to anticipate that this return will leave both Garnett and Pierce feeling mixed and affected.
Garnett, who played six season in Boston said he hadn't put much thought, yet, about what it would be like returning to the TD Bank Garden, saying, he'll probably give it more thought "tonight," noting that "it will be different to be back in Boston," before excusing his "real talk" and once again gifting us with what's really real. "I hear it's freezing as shit (in Boston)," he said, "no different from New York. East coast is east coast -- for the most part it will be fun to go back, and see what happens."
Pierce admitted that "it's going to be a little weird," saying, "It's going to be a fun time, going there, seeing some of the guys, seeing some of the season ticket holders, seeing all of the people who've been there."
The process of returning, however, is made easier, according to Garnett, because he, Pierce and Terry are able to do it together. "To make this whole transition efficient and worthwhile," Garnett said of the importance of not going alone, "I feel like, not only having someone who is your partner, but your brother, someone who has been there with you, somebody you not only recognize as a personal friend but, like I said, a brother." He went on, "But for the most part, to go through this whole thing along with him -- with JET also -- has made this a little more easy."
Pierce, when asked just how emotional the return is going to be for him, what he expects to feel, said this is something he "can't script." He said, "You know, definitely a lot of memories are going to be passing through my head," noting the number of games he's played in Boston.
All-in-all, both players expect it to be an emotional return, for sure, but Garnett wants to make sure that the emotions and the fanfare don't overshadow the goal of this trip: to win a basketball game.
"I'm sure emotions are going to be very high," Garnett told the media, "and I'll react accordingly. But we're there to win the game. I hope this doesn't overshadow the game," he said. "It'll be good to see (Rajon) Rondo and some other friends, who obviously don't play, other than that it's just another game I got to be prepared for."
Deron Williams, who had a less than welcome return to Utah where he spent five-plus seasons, said that Pierce "will be fine," and noted that while Pierce hasn't been "in this situation" before, he has been in high pressure situations and should be able to pull from those moments in getting through Sunday's game.
Williams then went on to joke that his circumstance in Utah was a little different than Pierce's, joking that at least "he's going to get cheers."
Whatever the emotions are, they're expected to be immense, likely tough to deal with, early on, but not something that should get in the way of what's ultimately expected of them. To play basketball, for the Brooklyn Nets, and beat the Boston Celtics.