NEW YORK — Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett are ready to make the most of their new surroundings.
Traded from Boston to Brooklyn, the duo was introduced along with Jason Terry on Thursday at a news conference at Barclays Center, their new home.
Pierce said it was tough to leave Boston, where he played his entire career.
“I’m no longer a Boston Celtic; I’m a Brooklyn Net and that’s what it is right now. It’s a business,” Pierce said. “At some point we all have to move on, and I’m here to try to create some kind of legacy here in Brooklyn.”
The crowd applauded, appearing more excited about having Pierce in Brooklyn than he was about being here. That’s understandable given his history in Boston, where he is the Celtics’ No. 2 career scorer and was the NBA Finals MVP when they won the last of their NBA-high 17 championships.
But he said he thought “the writing was on the wall” in June when the Celtics negotiated a deal with the Clippers for coach Doc Rivers.
The Celtics and Nets agreed to the blockbuster trade on draft night, and it became official last week. Garnett waved a no-trade clause to accept the deal, and while saying it was “unfortunate” they had to move on, he seemed to have a little easier time embracing it.
“I don’t know anyone that loves change, but change has to happen for things to better,” he said.
The three newcomers were joined on the podium by first-year coach Jason Kidd, who at 40 is a longtime rival and just a few years older than his new players.
Deal with Turiaf complete: In Minneapolis, the Timberwolves signed free agent center Ronny Turiaf on Thursday.
The 30-year-old Turiaf agreed to terms last week on a two-year, $3.2 million contract.
The Timberwolves are still trying to re-sign restricted free agent Nikola Pekovic, but Turiaf will provide a veteran, defensive presence behind him. The 6-foot-10 Turiaf played last season for the Clippers, averaging 1.9 points, 2.3 rebounds and 10.5 minutes in 65 games plus five more in the playoffs.
A 2005 second-round draft choice by the Los Angeles Lakers, Turiaf will play for his sixth NBA team in less than four years. He also contributed to Miami’s 2012 championship run.
TEAM BRINGS DOUGLAS ABOARD: In Oakland, Calif., the Golden State Warriors signed free-agent guard Toney Douglas to a contract Thursday.
Douglas played for the Rockets and Kings last season, averaging 7.5 points and 2.1 assists in 18.1 minutes per game. The 27-year-old guard gives Golden State some added backcourt depth to help alleviate the loss of Jarrett Jack, who agreed to a four-year, $25 million deal with Cleveland.
Douglas was drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers with the 29th pick in 2009. He has career averages of 8.6 points, 2.3 rebounds and 2.4 assists in 246 career regular-season NBA games with the New York Knicks, Houston and Sacramento.
The Magic signed free-agent big man Jason Maxiell, adding a veteran presence to an injury-depleted frontcourt. Maxiell, 30, comes from Detroit, where he appeared in 72 games last season. He was drafted in 2005 and has spent his entire eight-year NBA career with the Pistons. The 6-foot-7 Maxiell joins a Magic roster that was thin behind center Nikola Vucevic, with Glen Davis recovering from foot surgery. ... The Mavericks have reached a deal with Samuel Dalembert, who will likely be their fifth starting center in the past five seasons.
The 6-foot-11 Dalembert is known as a defensive-minded center with career averages of 8.0 points, 8.1 rebounds and 1.8 blocked shots per game.
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