July 19, 2013 / Sports

New Nets driven to bring title to Brooklyn

The Brooklyn Paper
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Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry are in Brooklyn for only one reason — to bring the Nets a championship.

The former Boston Celtics were not shy about throwing the C-word around at their introductory press conference alongside coach Jason Kidd and general manager Billy King at the Barclays Center on Thursday afternoon. They feel the Nets are ready to win now.

“At this point in our careers, we are championship driven,” Pierce said. “We made a lot of money in our careers. We have won a number of awards. At this point right now, we are about winning a championship. Brooklyn gives us the best opportunity.”

Garnett, Pierce and Terry all bring a championship pedigree to Brooklyn. The first two won a title for Boston in 2008 and Terry earned a ring with the Dallas Mavericks in 2011. They feel that experience will help bring the Nets’ young core to another level this season.

“You have to like the direction they were headed in prior to us joining the roster,” Terry said. “This just keeps going in the right direction. The talent is there.”

They talked about the sacrifice and day in and day out work it takes to get to that level. The potential for less playing time and shots didn’t appear to problem for guys used to being either their team’s go-to guy or a top scorer. In their minds and Kidd’s, they are in Brooklyn to help the Nets’ youthful trio of Deron Williams, Joe Johnson and Brook Lopez mature into one of the league’s upper-echelon teams.

“I think it’s a great opportunity for the young guys to learn when you talk about these guys who have won championsh­ips,” Kidd said.

The three veterans join the Nets after King completed a draft-day trade that sent Kris Humphries, Gerald Wallace, MarShon Brooks, Keith Bogans and Kris Joseph — along with the team’s first-round picks in 2014, 2016 and 2018 — to Boston. The Nets also signed former Utah Jazz forward Andrei Kirilenko to a two-year deal.

They are added to a Nets team that went 49–33 last season and lost in the opening round of the playoffs to the Chicago Bulls. Garnett believes the only thing left is for the current roster to mesh together.

“The biggest question mark should be how well are we able to gel and how quickly are we able to gel?” he said.

The players avoided answering questions about taking the city from the Knicks and the rivalry between the two franchises. Kidd just said getting the better of the Knicks is just a step toward winning a title. Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov, who made a surprise appearance, believes his new roster will appeal to fans across the five boroughs and has already generated buzz.

“I am very lucky that my new players are familiar to the New York public,” he said. “I think that there will be a great anticipation for them to do good.”

Just “good” won’t be enough, though. The Nets made the trade to put the team on an elite level in the league. Even with Garnett, Pierce and Terry in the back ends of their careers, being 35 and older, King believes that their intangibles and toughness are just as important as their skills.

“The three players sitting here are all champions,” King said. “What they bring here is not just basketball. They will bring knowledge, they will bring experience, they will bring competitiveness, they will bring toughness.”

They hope to bring a championship, as well.

Reach reporter Joseph Staszewski at Follow him on twitter @cng_staszewski.

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Reasonable discourse

Elvis from Nawcostella says:
This is going to be awesome. Sad for the Celtics, but seriously thinking of becoming a Nets fan as well.
July 19, 2013, 12:10 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Until they actually make it to the NBA Finals, there is nothing to talk about. You can have the best team on paper and still be bad in practice. I have heard this before in sports, and great off season moves can mean anything until the season actually starts. Believe it or not, most teams that did the best off season moves actually had terrible seasons that year despite all the hype. Enough with the delusions as there are no magic bullets when the team has to improve especially when this is not the fanatical site known as Nets Daily.
July 19, 2013, 2:28 pm
Joey B from Bath Beach says:
Let's go camping!!
July 19, 2013, 2:31 pm
Elvis from Nawcostella says:
You are right-how dare anyone get excited about this? Too bad there aren't any magic bullets.
July 19, 2013, 3:05 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Elvis, it's just that until you actually make it, many will think that you are nothing but talk. These days, you can't just say you are champion just because you did some big off season moves. I never said that they won't win one in the near future, just that they get there first. In reality, if you want to show you are the best, then prove it on the floor rather than just say it in a press conference. Just don't count your chickens before they are hatched.
July 19, 2013, 3:50 pm
Elvis from Nawcostella says:
You're right. I won't choose to entertain myself by watching 2 of my favorite Celtics on a team in Brookyn, where I live, until the end of the season (IF they even make it to the playoffs). Screw it. I don't know what I was thinking. Thanks for your incredible guidance. You've saved me so much time.
July 19, 2013, 4:16 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Just to clear things up, I didn't say that they couldn't make it, they just have to get there first. When looking back at last season, despite all the hype with a new location, logo, arena, mascot, cheerleaders, and even jerseys, they still wound up the same, but just looking different in appearance. Although they did make the playoffs for the first time in a while, they still couldn't get past the Bulls, and this was without Derrick Rose being there. Overall, if you want to show that you are the best, just do it while playing your sport, and then everyone will believe you rather than just being all talk, because everyone will feel that you are just a dog that is all bark and no bite.
July 19, 2013, 6:27 pm
Topper from Bkn says:
Elvis don't worry about anything Tal says. If the Nets were still in New Jersey, he'd be just as excited about next season as the rest of us.
July 19, 2013, 10:18 pm
Elvis from Nawcostella says:
I had a great party last night-until Tal showed up (with the cops and a "the Sorrow and the Pity" DVD).
July 21, 2013, 12:45 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Topper, the Nets actually did have fans in NJ. To many of them, and I am not talking about those on Nets Daily, they saw the move to Brooklyn as a kick in the teeth to them. Most of the team that even play in that state aren't even considered NJ teams except for the Devils, which is something I don't even understand. How would you feel if there was a team playing in the state of NY, but wasn't even considered of that state? Now you know how others feel. Getting to make a fan base in Brooklyn for the Nets won't be that easy especially when many are long time Knicks fans who will probably never switch sides even when they are doing bad. Just be lucky that there are still some fans from NJ that are still liking the team even after the move, and those are probably the ones that hang out on Nets Daily.
July 21, 2013, 8:22 pm

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