It was an emotional Sunday evening in Boston for Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, who returned for the first time as Nets players, but it might have been especially awkward for Pierce, who had spent his entire career in green before this summer’s trade. The move devastated Pierce, writes Jackie MacMullan of ESPNBoston.com, who says the C’s second all-time leading scorer was near tears almost the entire time she interviewed him this past summer. Pierce told MacMullan that he wondered why the Celtics didn’t allow him to finish his career in Boston.
“I loved it here,” Pierce said Sunday. “Never wanted to leave.”
Here’s more from the Eastern Conference:
- The sense around the league is that the Raptors are more likely to keep Kyle Lowry than to trade him, but that could simply be a matter of Toronto’s high price tag for the point guard, which no other team has accepted yet, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.com (Twitter links). Lowry will be a free agent at season’s end, and Stein suggests that’s motivation for Raptors GM Masai Ujiri to continue trade talks
- Jose Calderon says the Pistons never made him an offer to re-sign with the team this summer, observes Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free-Press. “They were in contact with me, but I think they were waiting for Josh Smith, so I was just waiting and waiting, and Dallas came with a great offer … I couldn’t say no to that,” Calderon said.
- The Wizards spent their bi-annual exception this summer on Eric Maynor, who’s fallen so far out of the rotation that he isn’t even playing in blowouts, notes J. Michael of CSNWashington. Still, there’s plenty of reason why Maynor and the Wizards won’t soon be parting ways. His guaranteed contract includes a $2.1MM player option for next season, and he probably wouldn’t command as much if he were to become a free agent, Michael points out.
- The Sixers have assigned Lorenzo Brown to the D-League, the team announced. It’ll be the third time the point guard has gone to the Delaware 87ers this season, but his last pair of D-League stints lasted only a single day.