Jae Crowder isn’t holding a grudge.
The Celtics traded Crowder to the Cavaliers this offseason in the deal that also sent Isaiah Thomas to Cleveland and brought Kyrie Irving to Boston. Crowder learned of the trade while in Houston with his mother, who died of cancer just five minutes after he told her the news.
Obviously, the timing wasn’t great. Crowder was focused on much more important matters. But the unfortunate experience also gave Crowder some perspective on being traded by Boston, a team for which he played so hard over the last two-plus seasons.
“You realize there are things you can’t control,” Crowder said Sunday after Cavs practice, according to the Boston Herald. “You can’t control a lot of the stuff that happens in your life. I can’t control where I play right now. It’s a business. I’m in a business.
“What I can control is me playing basketball and how I treat my family and how I raise my child in the time that I have to spend on this earth. You know what I mean? I can’t control what happens with trades.”
Crowder exceeded expectations with Boston, making Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge look like a genius for acquiring the versatile forward in the December 2014 trade that sent Rajon Rondo to the Dallas Mavericks. Crowder’s reward was an eventual ticket out of town, though the 27-year-old seems understanding of how everything played out this summer.
“I’m thankful of the opportunity they gave me obviously,” Crowder said of the Celtics, per the Boston Herald. “I know that it’s a business, man. I’m not mad. I’m not upset. It was a bad time for everything, but at the same time, I’ve moved on from that. My family’s done a great job of keeping me in the moment and keeping me focused on the task at hand. And I came into a great locker room, so that helped a lot.
“But I have no bad blood with those guys. I’m just thinking about my goal here (with Cleveland), and that’s to win a championship. I just want to do my part and hold my end up.”
Crowder, who acknowledged he was “cool” with the changes the Celtics decided to make, will have his first opportunity to exact revenge Tuesday night when Cleveland hosts Boston in the 2017-18 NBA season opener.
Thumbnail photo via Ken Blaze/USA TODAY Sports Images
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