Oklahoma City Thunder notebook: Jeff Green downplays first game back in OKC

Green said: “Everybody's going to make a big deal about it, but it's just another game we have to win.”
by Darnell Mayberry Published: March 9, 2013
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It's been more than two years since the trade that sent Jeff Green to Boston in exchange for Kendrick Perkins.


But Sunday's game against the Celtics will be Green's first inside Chesapeake Energy Arena as a visitor.

Green, who once was considered an integral piece to the Thunder's future and a fan favorite, missed all of last season after undergoing heart surgery.

“Everybody's going to make a big deal about it, but it's just another game we have to win,” Green told Boston reporters before departing for Oklahoma City.

Green is averaging 11.1 points, 3.5 rebounds and 1.2 assists while playing 25.7 minutes in a reserve role for the Celtics. He was traded on Feb. 24, 2011, for financial reasons. Green ultimately signed a four-year, $36 million extension with Boston.

After being drafted fifth overall in 2007, Green spent 31/2 seasons with the Thunder franchise. He said his return will bring back memories but plans on treating it like any other business trip.

“It's a special place,” Green said of Oklahoma City. “It's where I started my career. But then again, I'm a guy who moves on. (Boston) is my city now. This is where I play. This is where I live. Thoughts and flashbacks will come back, but when it's all said and done, I'm there to play basketball.”

WHERE'S RONDO?

Boston has been without All-Star point guard Rajon Rondo since he tore his ACL on Jan. 25, requiring both surgery and Rondo to miss the remainder of the season.

Rondo scored six points with 16 assists and eight rebounds in Boston's 108-100 win over the Thunder in the first meeting between the two teams. He was averaging a career-high 13.7 points and an NBA-best 11.1 assists.

The Celtics, to the surprise of many, have gone 14-4 since losing Rondo. They won seven straight games immediately after Rondo's injury and now come to Oklahoma City on a five-game winning streak.

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by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
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