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Nets at Celtics | 7:30 p.m. (CSN)

Kelly Olynyk vs. Mason Plumlee key matchup in Celtics-Nets opener

Celtics centers Jared Sullinger (left) and Kelly Olynyk will both square off against the Nets’ Mason Plumlee in Wednesday’s season opener.AP

The Celtics open the season Wednesday night against the revamped Nets, who are without Paul Pierce, who signed with the Washington Wizards in the offseason.

The Nets still feature Celtics favorite Kevin Garnett, who will enter his 20th NBA season and will be in the starting lineup.

Not in the lineup tonight will be center Brook Lopez because of a mid-foot sprain. That is a break for the Celtics because Lopez usually gives the team fits with his size. Mason Plumlee, who was a member of Team USA during the World Cup, is expected to start.

Celtics guard Rajon Rondo made it through the team’s shootaround with no glitches and is expected to play after missing all of training camp with a broken left hand.


It is also the Brooklyn coaching debut of Lionel Hollins, who will instill a defensive-minded system for the Nets.

The key matchup is Celtics center Kelly Olynyk vs. Plumlee. It wasn’t supposed to be this way, but Olynyk is the starting center because Vitor Faverani still isn’t healthy and Tyler Zeller was better suited coming off the bench. Olynyk will have to bring Plumlee away from the basket on defense, while Plumlee is likely to be defended by Jared Sullinger on offense.

Olynyk will have to score from the perimeter to make this a matchup advantage for the Celtics.

The Nets won the season series three games to one last season, with the teams splitting the games in Boston.

Nets at a glance

(2013-14 statistics)

■  When, where: Wednesday, 7:30 p.m., at TD Garden.

■  TV, radio: CSN, WBZ-FM (98.5)

■   Scoring: Brook Lopez 20.7, Joe Johnson 15.8, Deron Williams 14.3.

■   Rebounds: Kevin Garnett 6.6, Lopez 6.0, Mason Plumlee 4.4.

■   Assists: Williams 6.1, Jorge Gutierrez 2.0, Andrei Kirilenko 1.6.

■  Head to head: This is the first of four meetings; Brooklyn won three of four last season.


■  Miscellany: Garnett begins his 20th season in the NBA and makes his third appearance at the Garden since joining the Nets . . . Lopez (foot sprain) is doubtful. Nets coach Lionel Hollins said Plumlee will start next to Garnett if Lopez is unable to go.

Follow Gary Washburn on Twitter at @GWashburnGlobe.