Irving suffered a facial fracture Friday in Boston's 90-87 victory over Charlotte when Australian teammate Aron Baynes elbowed him accidentally. "When I have the mask on, I'm really dialed into what's in front of me, my peripherals are a little cut off, but it's just something you get you used to".
With the protective mask on, Irving played 29 minutes and had five assists. That black mask, like, it just takes away your vision, so I'm just like, 'Oh, basket.' Like, this is just the best-case scenario. "So that's that. Just wearing a mask for precautionary reasons".
"I was telling some of my teammates, some of the fans, too, they were asking me whether I was going to wear the black mask". So I'm glad I get to wear a clear one. "It's masked man. But I understand that it's just for my safety so throw on the mask for a few weeks and go about my business".
"When I take off the mask, I can see everything".
The Celtics, whose 13-2 record is the NBA's best, are on their longest win streak since winning 14 in a row in November and December of 2010, with the team record of 19 consecutive wins coming in November and December of 2008.
At Dallas, LaMarcus Aldridge scored 32 points and Australian guard Patty Mills added 19 to spark the San Antonio Spurs over the Dallas Mavericks 97-91. Al Horford also continued his efficient run, with 17 points on 8-for-10 shooting.
As Kerr's Warriors are set to travel to MA on Thursday for a date with the surging Boston Celtics, the two-time National Basketball Association champion coach envisions the Dubs' next opponent being the future Eastern Conference kingpins. He then put the finishing touches on the win with a 22-foot pull-up jumper and a drive to the rim, giving the Celtics a 99-92 lead shortly after consecutive 3-pointer by Brooklyn's Allen Crabbe made it a four-point game.
"I thought guys competed", Nets coach Kenny Atkinson said.
Following a stretch of trading shots, Irving came out of a rebound pack with the ball following a Rondae Hollis-Jefferson miss, and Jaylen Brown extended the break with a lob to a dunking Jayson Tatum for a 104-96 lead.