By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor - @JESchott19
Marcus Thornton is excited about his role with the Boston Celtics, who acquired him from the Nets in the three-way trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers that brought Jarrett Jack to Brooklyn
The trade went as follows: The Nets acquired Jack, a point guard, and guard/forward Sergey Karasev from the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Nets sent Thornton, a guard, to Boston, and the draft rights to Ilkan Karaman, Christian Drejer and Edin Bavcic to Cleveland. In addition to Thornton, the Celtics received center/forward Tyler Zeller and a first round draft pick from the Cavaliers, and Boston sent a conditional second round pick to Cleveland.
BrooklynFans.com caught up with Thornton after Sunday’s Nets-Celtics game in Brooklyn. Thornton said of how he fits in with the Celtics, “My role on this team is to come in and play hard. come in every minute I’m out there, give it all I’ve got to help my team win.”
On Boston Head Coach Brad Stevens, he said, “Great coach, man. Great coach. He plays to your strengths. Whatever you do well, you know, he plays to it, so you just go out there and do it.”
On his first reaction to becoming a Boston Celtic, he said, “Young team, young team, you know, energetic. We can get out, press the ball, and we can run too. We gho guys like (Rajon) Rondo and AB (Avery Bradley) who have been here and know a lot about the Celtics organization and has helped me along the way.”
On if being a young team, whose oldest player is ex-Net Gerald Wallace at age 32, is an advantage in what is becoming a fast-paced NBA, Thornton said, “It is, it is an advantage, but you’ve got those guys , Rondo and Gerald and they’ve been here (in the NBA) a long time, they’ve been on championship teams and they actually know how to win. To put that (youth) with those guys is a recipe for success.”
This Celtics team is coming in under the radar, something rare considering all the attention during the just concluded Paul Pierce-Kevin Garnett-Ray Allen era. Thornton said of the Celtics being a possible surprise in the Atlantic Division, “I love being underrated because you never know, you can’t see it coming until it hits you, so I like to be that way, it is what it is.”
The Raptors last season had no expectations in the Atlantic, but won the division. On if Boston could do the same, Thornton said, “Toronto shocked the world last year, so why can’t we?”
CELTICS 100 NETS 86 – Preseason finale in Boston
The Celtics beat the Nets 100-86 on Wednesday night in the preseason finale for Brooklyn.
Nets Head Coach Lionel Hollins took no chances in this one, and rested the following players: Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, Andrei Kirilenko, Jarrett Jack. Out once again were Kevin Garnett and Markel Brown due to stomach viruses, and Brook Lopez, out with a foot injury.
Hollins started Mason Plumlee once again at center, and he led the Nets for the second straight game, as he had 15 points on 5-for-11 from the field, 11 rebounds, and 2 assists. Cory Jefferson started at power forward and had 11 points on 4-for-12 shooting, and 5 rebounds. Marquis Teague got the start at point guard, and had 10 points (4-6 FG) and 4 assists, but 6 turnovers, in 24 minutes. Alan Anderson was in the lineup at shooting guard, and shot a disappointing 1-for-9 from the field with 5 rebounds and a steal. The starter that really used this as a showcase was Sergey Karasev, who played 43 minutes, and had 6 points (2-11 FG, 1-5 on 3-pt), 5 rebounds, 1 assist, and 2 steals.
Mirza Teletovic had 15 points off the bench, on 5-for-10 from the field overall and 3-for-6 on threes. Point guard Jorge Gutierrez played 24 minutes and had 12 points (4-6 FG, 0-1 on 3-pt), 5 assists, and 3 steals.
For the Celtics, rookie Marcus Smart led the way with 16 points on 5-for-8 from the field and 2-for-5 on threes, 4 assists, 2 steals, and a rebound. Center Jared Sullinger practically had a mirror performance to his outing on Sunday, as he had 15 points (7-for-10 FG, 1-for-4 on pt) and 17 rebounds.