Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving played with the Boston Celtics’ current core of players when they were still finding their way in the NBA.
But now Irving sees a much different group taking the floor for the Celtics.
Irving believes things are coming together at the right time for the Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown-led Boston group as the Celtics took a 2-0 series lead Wednesday night with a 114-107 victory over the Nets at TD Garden.
“I’m not surprised at all,” Irving said, via NBC Sports Boston. “I just think the timing is right. Their window is now for these young guys that are on this team that have matured. They’ve been through series together, they’ve been through seasons together, they’ve been through battles together and I got to experience some of that and now being on the opposite end and going against a healthy Celtics team, obviously without Robert Williams, but you’re just seeing there’s a difference in their verve, there’s a difference in the way they approach the game.”
Irving, who scored only 10 points on 4-for-13 shooting in Game 2, continued to pass out praise, singling out first-year Celtics coach Ime Udoka and former coach, and now president of basketball operations, Brad Stevens for their strong work in helping the Celtics reach their current potential.
“Also, they have a set offense and defense they rely on,” Irving said. “Ime’s been a huge part of that. But you have to give credit to that guy that’s sitting in the president role as well now. We don’t get to see him as often. Brad Stevens definitely has a lot to do (with it).”