Avery Bradley on returning to Boston: 'It's nice to be back'

Annette Crawford
November 28, 2017

Irving put up some truly ridiculous shooting numbers in Cleveland's five-game Eastern Conference finals win over Boston last summer, hitting over 60 percent of his shots, but Bradley made him work on a lot of them.

For seven seasons, the Boston Celtics benefited from having Avery Bradley's elite on-ball defense on their side.

"It's honestly just another game for me", said Bradley, who is averaging a career-high 16.8 points for the Pistons after being traded with a second-round pick for Marcus Morris to make salary cap room for free agent Gordon Hayward in July. "I was disappointed in that for us, but also for him because of what he had done for the two years". That didn't make losing them both any easier. He teamed with Rajon Rondo to form one of the league's best defensive backcourts for a handful of seasons, and along the way molded into a reliable scorer. Morris and Baynes had played only two seasons (2015-2017) for Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy. Every game for me is the same. I think guys are still going to be who they are in their basic personality, but I think, incrementally, everybody steps it up just a notch when they see a guy like that.

"It ended sort of insane for both of us because he opted out and ended up with less money and missed the market", Van Gundy said.

"I thought I was", Bradley said, "but I'm not really that emotional with it anymore when it comes to stuff like that because I've been playing the game of basketball for a long time". "Instantly I knew that there could be something that could happen with me or a few other guys on the team".

Bradley was actually on an airplane the morning he received the news the Celtics had dealt him to the Detroit Pistons.

Bradley may not be able to compare to the all time legends that have returned to Boston after great careers there, but I would expect the cheers to be just as loud.

Bradley said that he's treating his return to Boston as just another game, eager to see how the current second-best team in the East matches up against the current conference leader. "That to me is the flawless ingredients to winning basketball". "I don't know. I learned so much from this city". "I learned a lot from everybody on the court and off the court". So my time here, I really appreciated it. "So I just look at all those experiences that I had and I'm thankful for them".

"And Avery's great, too, because he brings that every day but he's not a know-it-all". They face another big challenge tonight against the team with the best record in the National Basketball Association.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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