Richard Jefferson remains a Boston Celtics rival even in his basketball afterlife.
The former NBA forward and current analyst of Brooklyn Nets games on the YES Network skewered Celtics fans Monday night at Barclays Center by cheerfully reminding them of his postseason success against the team they love. Jefferson made the dig when talking to Celtics fans following the Nets’ 109-102 win.
Jefferson was right, sort of.
He actually was 3-0 in the postseason against Boston, having featured for the then-New Jersey Nets in their playoff wins over the Celtics in the 2002 Eastern Conference Finals and the 2003 Eastern Conference semifinals, as well as with the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 2017 Eastern Conference Finals.
Of course, Jefferson also was involved in the Nets’ Game 3 chokejob in 2002, when they surrendered a 21-point lead in the final frame as the Celtics recorded the largest fourth-quarter comeback in NBA playoffs history. As a then-rookie, Jefferson scored eight points in 22 minutes in that game, missing six of the 10 shots he attempted (as well as going 0-for-2 from the foul line) with three turnovers and five fouls in the Celtics’ 94-90 victory.
Nevertheless, the Nets went on to win that series, so his point remains valid.