Kyrie Irving’s return to the TD Garden was met with exactly the reaction we expected: a cascade of boos from Boston fans.
Following his comments calling out Celtics fans earlier this week, Kyrie and the Brooklyn Nets traveled to Boston for Game 3 of their first-round playoff series. 5,000 fans gathered in the Garden to watch their Celtics bring the series to 2-1, notching their first win over the Nets with a 125-119 score.
The Celtics will get even more fan reinforcements later this weekend. With capacity expanding from 5,000 to 17,000 today, the Garden should be even more rocking for Game 4 on Sunday night.
While this certainly means an even more adverse environment for Kyrie, he didn’t seem too worried about it during his postgame interviews.
“I mean, it’s basketball,” the star point guard said, per MassLive. “I’ve been in a few environments in my life so like I said, as long as it’s strictly the nature of basketball out there and there’s nothing extra, I’m cool with it. Just get some preparation with the team tomorrow and get prepared for Sunday. Going to keep it straight basketball.”
Kyrie Irving said he's looking forward to the challenge of a bigger crowd in TD Garden on Sunday night: "It's basketball. I've been in a few environments in my life. As long as there's nothing extra, I'm cool with it."
— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) May 29, 2021
Whether or not it had to do with the Boston crowd, Kyrie certainly had an off night in Game 3. Through his team-high 41 minutes, the former Celtic put up just 16 points on an inefficient 35.3 percent shooting from the field.
Two-time All Star Jayson Tatum was the Celtics’ saving grace, posting an incredible 50-point performance to carry his team to victory.
Game 4 will tipoff tomorrow night at 7 p.m. ET.