Kevin Durant wasn’t too amused by Bruce Brown’s comments after the Nets had clinched the seven seed in the NBA Playoffs and a date with the Boston Celtics in the first round.
The comment in question came when Brown was asked about what the Nets needed to do to slow the Celtics down. In his response, the 25-year-old seemed to call out Boston’s two bigs and how Brooklyn could exploit them.
“We can’t let (Jayson) Tatum get 50,” Brown said. “We got to be physical with them. Now they don’t have Robert Williams, so they have less of a presence in the paint, and we could attack Al Horford and (Daniel) Theis. So them not having Robert Williams is huge.”
Brown had a big game for the Nets on Tuesday night to help them get to the first round of the playoffs, but Durant wasn’t thrilled about what Brown had said. At first, he asked Kyrie Irving about Brown’s comments after Irving wrapped up his postgame media availability and then asked reporters in the press conference room about it.
The Nets superstar said that it was “caffeine pride” talking and that Horford and Theis can be as dangerous as Williams.
“I mean we respect our opponents,” Durant said. “We don’t need to talk about what we going to do to them. I just don’t like that, but that’s how Bruce is. He comes in and keeps the same energy throughout the whole season, but we don’t need to say s— like that. Let’s just go out there and hoop.”
The Celtics will certainly feel the absence of Williams when the first round begins on Sunday and Brown wasn’t wrong in believing that the Nets can exploit that. Williams tore his meniscus against the Minnesota Timberwolves on March 27 and underwent surgery to repair the injury.
He has been ruled out of the first round by the Celtics.
The opening round series between the Nets and Celtics has the makings of a very entertaining series as Brooklyn tries to win a title after one of the wackiest seasons in quite some time. It’s also another chance for Bruce Brown, a Boston native, to battle his hometown team in the postseason.
“I’m definitely looking forward to it,” Brown said. “You see I have a Boston shirt on. I mean I love Boston, I love being there. My family, my dad will be there, so I can’t wait.”
Brown has become a force for the Nets since the trade deadline, which likely adds to his excitement for the series. He finished with 18 points Tuesday night against the Cleveland Cavaliers and a near triple-double.
“I’m just taking advantage of the opportunity that other teams are giving me,” Brown said of his success. “They’re leaving me open, I’m knocking down the corner three, I’m getting in the paint and making the right decisions. … I’m just making the right play, that’s all.”