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The Boston Globe

Sports

Kevin Garnett to skip Celtics-Nets preseason game

NEW YORK – Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Garnett won’t play against his former team Tuesday night when the Nets play the Celtics in a preseason game at the Barclays Center.

But Nets forward Paul Pierce will play against the Celtics, the team that drafted him in 1998 and the team for which he played until he was traded to the Nets this summer as part of a blockbuster deal that included Garnett and former Celtics guard Jason Terry.

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Garnett told reporters after the Nets’ preseason loss Monday in Philadelphia that if he had the option of playing against the Celtics, he would, but he is being told to sit out and rest.

“It wasn’t my decision. So that’s where I’m going to leave that,” he said. “I am trying to be as positive as I can be. This is not up to me, and I’m being positive. I’m trying to listen and go with the plan that was laid out for me, and being positive with that, so I’m trusting [Nets coach] Jason [Kidd] and what he has in store for myself and I’m going to embrace it.”

Garnett downplayed his absence against his former team in the preseason game.

“This is not about me individually, nor is it about Paul [Pierce], nor is it about Jet [Terry] or any individual player here,” he said. “We’re working toward getting better and I feel like every night we step on the floor, that’s the goal. And I thought we did that, and (Tuesday’s) another chance to get better.”

Kidd, however, did say that Pierce would play against the Celtics. Pierce did not travel with the Nets to play against the 76ers in Philadelphia.

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