ibusinesslines.com January 20, 2018

LeBron James HELD BACK Kyrie Irving at Cleveland Cavaliers - Steve Kerr

15 November 2017, 11:40 | Charlene Valdez

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

"It sure looks like Boston is the team of the future in the East, with the assets that they still have and their young talent and their coaching, and Kyrie [Irving] is fantastic", Kerr told reporters after practice on Tuesday, per ESPN's Chris Haynes. That black mask, like, it just takes away your vision.

"It's nearly like having somewhat foggy blinders on", Irving said. "So, you take advantage of the two nights that you see them".

Irving experienced some frustrating moments with the item forced upon him after fracturing his face in a collision with teammate Aron Bayes 1:50 into Friday's win over Charlotte.

When it was over, Kyrie Irving shed the plastic mask and saluted some of the Boston Celtics fans chanting "MVP, MVP", as he walked off the court. "Hopefully, it'll get better in the next few weeks".

Irving, who played his first six seasons in Cleveland before coming to Boston in an offseason trade that sent Isaiah Thomas to the Cavs, has been a catalyst for his new team.

Irving famously scored a then-career-high 41 points against the New York Knicks while wearing a black mask in December 2012.

Following a stretch of trading shots, Irving came out of a rebound pack with the ball following a Rondae Hollis-Jefferson miss, and Jaylen Brown extended the break with a lob to a dunking Jayson Tatum for a 104-96 lead. Despite losing star free agent acquisition Gordon Hayward just minutes into his debut and dropping their first two games, the Celtics have been scintillating ever since. "We just have to play really solid on both ends and do what we do as well as we can and see where we stand".

While Irving scored 25 points for the third time as a Celtic, four others reached double figures.

An inability to contain Irving down the stretch sent the Nets to a seventh loss in nine games since beating Cleveland on October 25.

These Nets are a volume-shooting, pace-accelerated team under coach Kenny Atkinson. "We didn't handle it". Allen Crabbe and Caris LeVert added 15 points apiece.

"They're obviously a great team, and whenever it seemed like we were able to make a run, they would come back with a run of their own", Harris said.

"For us, it's another game for us to continuously get better and a test for us to really stay together and show our resilience and show what we're really made of", he said.

That makes for an intriguing test against a Warriors team that leads the National Basketball Association in offense and averages 119.6 points a contest, shooting a gaudy league-best 52.0 percent overall and 41.3 from 3-point range. So I'm just like, 'Oh, basket.' Like, this is just the best-case scenario.

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