The Brooklyn Nets went through a significant roster makeover this summer. This will be the first time Brooklyn and the Miami Heat will meet up since ex-Celtics Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry joined the Nets.
The Heat play the first of two preseason games against the Brooklyn Nets at 8 p.m. ET Thursday night. The game will air on TNT and I have a feeling that it’ll be worth the coverage.
If you’ll take a trip down memory lane with me, it seems like just yesterday that Pierce and Garnett were condemning Ray Allen for breaking his Celtic allegiance and joining forces with their unofficial rivals in Miami. Now just a year later the tables are turned and the seemingly forever Celtic duo will be dressed out in Brooklyn uniforms tonight. Dwyane Wade and LeBron James expressed their opinions about the irony of the situation.
“I think the first thing I thought was, ‘Wow Ray got killed for leaving Boston, and now these guys are leaving Boston.” – James
“People say things about people when they do something when they themselves would do the same thing. It’s about putting yourself in the best situation, and at the end of the day, we all do that.” – Wade
Tonight I expect a bit of chippiness. The media has for sure speculated about these comments and the situation in general on both sides. Don’t anticipate regular season speed or intensity, but I would also be curious to see how the pregame greetings between each team play out. There was much made of the acknowledgment, or lack thereof, that Garnett gave Allen in last year’s season opener.
Brooklyn also doesn’t have all of their pieces together just yet. Deron Williams is nursing a sprained ankle and will not be playing in tonight’s matchup. His presence is not only key to the building of this team’s chemistry, but their continued potential success.
The two teams meet for their first regular season matchup on November 1st at Barclays Center. If Williams is active and ready to play, that’s when the real games will begin. Until then though, there’s nothing boring about stirring the pot.