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Kyrie Irving on choosing Brooklyn: ‘In my heart I knew I always wanted to play at home’

Milwaukee Bucks v Boston Celtics - Game Four

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - MAY 06: Kyrie Irving #11 of the Boston Celtics looks on before Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Milwaukee Bucks during the 2019 NBA Playoffs at TD Garden on May 06, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

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Kyrie Irving sees himself as a New Yorker. He grew up in New Jersey — playing in high school at Saint Patrick in Elizabeth, NJ — when the Nets were there.

For him, choosing the Nets as a free agent was about coming home to the team he followed as a kid. He explained that in a video he did for Roc Nation (his agency).

Part of that family is Kevin Durant, Irving’s good friend (he texted him every day after the injury, when others faded away, Durant’s other close friend Jay Williams said on ESPN this morning) who is joining him in Brooklyn (on the court eventually, Durant has to recover from a torn Achilles first).

With Durant, the Nets would be contenders this year.

However, without him, this first year is going to be more of a wild card situation in Brooklyn. The Nets should be good, but based on Irving’s leadership in Boston a year ago, nobody is sure what will happen with this young team.