Howard Beck of Bleacher Report has an update on the impact Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett are making in Brooklyn:
Pierce and Garnett represent everything the Nets lacked: toughness, accountability, ferocity and a dedication to the defensive arts. Outside of Evans and the rapidly declining Gerald Wallace, the Nets had no defensive conscience last season.
That conscience is now easy to spot, and hear. Garnett was at the center of nearly every huddle Tuesday night in the team’s overtime victory over the Wizards, when the new-look Nets made their preseason debut in Washington.
“He’s a constant talker on the floor,” Lopez said. “He’s just talking through the team defense and the spot where he needs to be. Letting me know he has my back or I need to have his back, vice versa, whatever, talking about the pick-and-rolls. It’s good to have that chirping in your ear, because it gets you to talk on the floor as well.”
This is a different group, and a different time. No one has mentioned Ubuntu in Nets camp, but Pierce and Garnett are still preaching the lessons. Every practice ends with a scrum—Garnett at the center, his right arm and right forefinger raised high above the rest, leading the Nets in a simple chant: “One, two, three…All in!”
I’m having a hard time with this break-up.