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Kyrie Irving expects Celtics fans to praise Isaiah Thomas in Boston return

From NBA media reports

* Wednesday on ESPN: Cavaliers vs. Celtics (8 ET)

It’s unlikely many Boston Celtics fans would be interested in undoing the team’s offseason trade for Kyrie Irving, considering how well it has worked out in Boston. But that shouldn’t stop them from appreciating what Isaiah Thomas, the All-Star swapped to Cleveland in the deal, did in his time with the Celtics.

So says Irving, who might find himself matched up against Thomas if Cleveland’s yet-to-play point guard participates Wednesday. Chris Forsberg of ESPN had Irving’s anticipatory comments that included no small amount of praise for the healing Cavalier:

… Kyrie Irving showered Isaiah Thomas with praise in advance of his return to game action and said that regardless of whether he plays or not when the Cleveland Cavaliers visit TD Garden on Wednesday night, Irving expects Thomas will be showered with affection.

With Thomas set to make his season debut soon after missing the start of the season with the hip injury that forced him out of the Eastern Conference finals against the Cavaliers last season, Irving gushed about what Thomas gave to Boston.

“That guy put on some performances, epic performances,” Irving said. “And, for the city of Boston, what he gave on a consistent basis, you were just wondering how that tough-nosed m—–f—– was just getting it done every single night and demanding from his teammates and playing with an edge that really cemented himself as a premier player in this league.

“And you’re just nothing short of happy for a guy like that. And whether or not he plays, it’s going to be nothing but love for him from Boston.”

One potential snag in what surely would be an emotional evening for all concerned Wednesday: Cleveland has a home game Tuesday night against Portland (7 ET, NBA TV). If Thomas were to play against the Trail Blazers, it’s a long shot Cavs coach Tyronn Lue would use him again in 24 hours as he transitions back into action.