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DeMarre Carroll criticized for trashing Raptors offense

NBA: Toronto Raptors at Minnesota Timberwolves Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Well, get ready to mark down another red letter day when the NBA schedule comes out in a few weeks. There will be, of course, D’Angelo Russell’s return to Staples Center and Brook Lopez’s return to Barclays. Now, you can add DeMarre Carroll’s first game in Toronto.

Carroll’s critiques of the Toronto offense in the Toronto Sun and New York Post have rendered him “persona non grata” across the border. In short, Carroll, traded last week along with two picks for Justin Hamilton, has said the offense was too much driven by ISO calls for Kyle Lowry and Demar DeRozan. He also suggested that the Nets are a “better fit” for him and intimated that the Nets performance team is a whole lot better than the one he left with the Raptors.

The response to Carroll reached a crescendo Wednesday when Paul Pierce and Stephen Jackson spoke about Carroll’s criticism on “The Jump,” the ESPN talk show. The two ex-Nets did not like what Carroll said or how he said it, after exiting Toronto.

"DeMarre Carroll, why are you even talking?" Jackson asked.

"If anybody passes you the ball, you should be happy. Play defense. You're Bruce Bowen, just go in the corner, shoot threes, and be happy. You shouldn't even have an input. You're not good. You can shoot threes in the corner. ... He's not good enough to have an opinion. He's not. He's not. He's not."

Pierce was less angry about it all, but did say Carroll is "just salty," and would've been better off not burning bridges. Of course, two days earlier, Pierce made a point of signing his one-day contract with the Celtics dressed in Nets workout shorts. Salty, Paul? Really?

Carroll did start 72 games for Toronto last season, averaging 8.9 rebounds, 3.8 rebounds and 34.1 percent from deep, making him a key contributor to the Raptors’ season.