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For Marv Albert, Opening Night is also Homecoming

Chris Humphreys-US PRESSWIRE

Marv Albert was an errand boy for the Brooklyn Dodgers before he was a ball boy for the New York Knicks, a kid who did his homework on the subway while going from school to work at Ebbets Field. So the Brooklyn Nets mean more to him than a team whose games he called for YES when they were in New Jersey. They're the embodiment of something deeper, a homecoming.

On Monday, Albert discusses what called Opening Night on TNT will mean to him.

"It has a lot of meaning to me as someone that grew up in Brooklyn, and then broadcast the Knicks for 37 years and the Nets for 5 years," said Albert, in a Monday conference call. "Just to see the reaction and how it's been received, I just think it's going to be a smash hit all around -- not only the basketball."

He believes the Nets and Barclays Center will change a lot about Brooklyn in ways that are only now being seen on the streets of Brooklyn ... and Manhattan. Wherever he goes, he sees Nets gear.

"It's amazing what that does for a team, when people are wearing T-shirts and hats all over the place," Albert said. "That's all I see. Even in Manhattan I see that. It's really big league. I think there will be a lot of interest. It almost seems like the old Nets vaporized, are gone. And here come the Brooklyn Nets."

Zach Zarba, an NBA ref, lives a six-minute walk from Barclays Center and is looking forward to working games in Brooklyn. “Who wouldn’t want to work so close to home?”