The Celtics have a lot of work ahead of them to ensure chemistry on the court, but the chemistry off the court is already there.
Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward might look like polar opposites, but they came across as best buddies today.
Here are some snippets from the humor-filled press conference:
KI on Cleveland:
Going after something bigger than myself… individuals I can grow with… and that’s not a knock on anyone in Cleveland. Cleveland was an unbelievable journey and ride, but I’m not going to point at specific issues or individuals.
GH on Isaiah Thomas:
Isaiah did a tremendous job recruiting me to Boston. I was definitely excited about playing with him. I’ve been in this business long enough to realize things happen. Kyrie Irving is one of the best basketball players in the league. Still a great opportunity for me.
KI on the concept of a franchise player:
There is no ONE player. Appreciation goes a lot deeper here because of team history. No such thing as one player putting team on his shoulders.
Danny Ainge wouldn’t comment on trade negotiations but Kyrie said:
When Boston came a knocking… Woo… I was interested.
Brad Stevens on the roster turnover:
Each team is its own entity. Even when we’ve had more guys coming back, you still have to work on all the (standard) things. We’re still in the off-season and limited what we can do, but when training camp begins we need to set the tone for building a foundation on both ends of the floor.
KI on Stevens:
He’s always 2-3, let me give him credit, 4 steps ahead. Getting maximum potential out of who you have on the floor. That’s coach Stevens. Appreciation I have for his knowledge of the game, I can’t wait to steal some of that.
Brad joked: I coached you in a game (All-Star) where we gave up 197 points!
GH on them coming together:
Destiny? We both have March 23 birthdays. In 2013, I went to Cleveland on a visit (as an RFA) and Kyrie was excited and tried to recruit me. Then LeBron came and that kinda squashed that whole thing.
KI on playing with GH:
That’s a bad dude…. Never worrying about who is stepping on who’s toes. We are all in this together.
Both players on the upcoming season:
A quip by Wyc drew the biggest laugh:
Photo courtesy Chad Amaral