You may be happy LeBron James moved West this offseason -- opening a clear path to the NBA Finals for the Celtics -- but Jaylen Brown isn't.
“To be honest, I wanted him to stay,” Brown said Thursday at a media availability in Las Vegas, as reported by Brian Robb of Boston Sports Journal (subscription required). “I was kind of mad, I wanted to be the team to go through him.
"I feel like we could have had it last year, but we fell a little bit short. But I applaud someone doing what’s best for him. He did what’s best for him in that situation. I wanted him to stay in the East. I don’t like when people say, ‘Now that LeBron’s gone, y’all are the favorite.’ That irks me. A lot of us, we feel the same, because we feel that whether he was there or wasn’t there, we were coming out.”
Brown was also asked about restricted free agent Marcus Smart and the potential the Celtics will lose him.
"Marcus, what he brings to the table is second-to-none,” Brown said. “The analytics, all of that, throw that away. What Marcus adds to a team and a franchise, everybody knows. I think [Celtics basketball chief Danny Ainge] knows that. And I feel like something will come and the best situation will happen for both parties. But I would love to play this next year with Marcus Smart, and I feel like everybody feels the same way.”
The Maine Red Claws were in action at home at the Portland Expo Center on Saturday night hosting the Delaware Blue Coats, taking a 128-123 loss to fall to 7-4 and fourth place in the Eastern Conference.
Tacko Fall wasn’t in action, but Bryce Brown was simply furious, leading all scorers with 43 points 15 of 17 from the floor overall and a franchise single-game record 11 of 11 three-pointers. Tremont Waters was terrific, too, with 18 points and 11 assists.
Brown, an undrafted free agent who helped lead Auburn to its first Final Four appearance last spring, was simply unconscious for the Claws. He shot a perfect 11 of 11 from three-point range to give him an absurd effective field goal percentage of 1.2 for the game.
Waters, the Connecticut native, was crafty in his distribution, with just four turnovers to go with his 11 assists.
Yante Maten (18 points), Vincent Poirier (18) and Justin Bibbs (10) also scored in double-figures for the Red Claws.
The Red Claws return to action Friday in Des Moines, Iowa to face the Iowa Wolves, with tipoff at 8 p.m. ET.
Don’t miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Cavaliers, which tips off Monday at 6:30 p.m. ET with Celtics Pregame Live, then Mike & Scal have the call of the game at 7:30 p.m. You can also stream the game through the MyTeams App.
Anytime is a good time to watch highlights of the greatness that was Larry Bird playing for the Celtics.
But on Larry Legend's 63rd birthday? It's time to break out the best of No. 33...
The fight with Dr. J in 1984:
The 60-point game against the Hawks in '85:
The steal against Isiah Thomas and the Pistons in '87:
The "you are watching was greatness is all about" duel with Dominique Wilkins in '88:
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Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Cavaliers, which tips off Monday at 7 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live, and then Tommy & Mike have the call at 7:30 p.m. You can also stream the game on the MyTeams App.