The NBA preseason is ramping up with opening night around the corner. Over the weekend, the Nets took the court under the Brooklyn Bridge, practicing in front of their home fans. It’s the fourth time the Nets have hosted “Practice in the Park,” with 2,500 fans gathering at Pier 2 last Saturday.
“It’s awesome,” said new signing Patty Mills, taking in the event. “Just having such a big community event and having everyone here supporting the entire team. I’m a culture guy, so being able to dive deep into the culture of Brooklyn and seeing what it has to offer was the next step for me.”
A notable inclusion in the outdoor practice was Kyrie Irving. Despite not being able to take the court in home games due to the NYC and NBA vaccine policies and missing a pair of preseason games, the Nets guard took the court in the community event. It would end up being possibly his last appearance working with the team this season, as the Nets moved to bar Irving from practicing or playing on a part-time basis. Kyrie won’t take the court for Brooklyn this season unless he gets vaccinated, nor will the Nets offer him a contract extension.
Brooklyn capped a solid preseason with a win against Minnesota. They opened the preseason slate with wins over the Lakers and Bucks before falling to the 76ers.
Next Tuesday, October 19th, Brooklyn opens the NBA season in Milwaukee against the defending champion Bucks, looking to avenge their second round defeat. They’ll make a stop in Philadelphia to take on the Eastern Conference-contending 76ers before playing Charlotte in their home opener on October 24th.
“From this point on, we’re going to have a long journey to achieve a championship. We’re taking it one step at a time,” said Mills. “To have everyone here outside is pretty special.”