Kyrie Irving happy to be back: 'I miss playing'

Kyrie Irving was pleased to make his first appearance of 2019 in the Celtics’ win over the Nets, even if it took some time for him to rediscover his rhythm in his return from an eye injury.

Irving had missed Boston’s first two games of the calendar year because of a scratched eye but was back on the court in Monday’s 116-95 win.

Eight Celtics players reached double figures, including Irving, who led the team with 17 in his 28 minutes.

However, he conceded feeling a little rusty initially having been off-target with his first attempt of the night.

“My first shot went to the other side of the glass, so that should tell you where I was in terms of playing live basketball,” Irving told reporters.

“This was the first live game I’ve had since the Spurs game [on Dec. 31]. It was good just to get my wind back out there and play with my teammates again and test it out there.

“It was just good, I miss playing. I never want to miss games.

“It was good to get rest. I am never going to be a guy that’s against rest for anybody.

“Even if it comes [in] circumstances with an injury or something like that. My eyes are my business, but it was good to get six days of staying off my feet as much as possible. I was in the gym, but just being very smart about it.”