The Boston Celtics were fortunate to replace one All-Star point guard with another this offseason, but the scenario left Terry Rozier on the outside looking in.
Rozier made out just fine, ultimately inking a three-year, $58 million contract with the Charlotte Hornets after a sign-and-trade deal. But to say he has big shoes to fill would be an understatement.
Kemba Walker served as Charlotte’s point guard and icon for the last eight seasons, becoming the franchise’s leading scorer along the way. Of course he’s now in Boston, essentially swapping spots with Rozier, leading to plenty of Walker-related questions. Yes, that comes with the business, but Rozier said he’s done talking about the University of Connecticut product.
“I?m not Kemba. I?m not coming in here acting like I?m Kemba. I?m Terry,” Rozier told The Charlotte Observer. “… I respect the hell out of Kemba: When I play against him, I?m going to give him my best, and I know I?ll get his best. But Kemba? I don?t want to hear it. Don?t talk to me about Kemba.”
Rozier surely will have a big chip on his shoulder when the Hornets come to TD Garden on Sunday to open their preseason schedule against the Celtics. And he’s not trying to hide that.
“I?m pissed off about a lot of stuff,” he said. “I want to prove myself again.”
Tip-off for Sunday’s preseason opener is slated for 6 p.m. ET.