Tuesday, February 25, 2014
Thornton makes his practice debut
By Jovan Buha | Special to ESPNNewYork.com
LOS ANGELES -- Brooklyn Nets guard Marcus Thornton made his practice debut with the team at UCLA on Tuesday after missing Sunday's game against the Los Angeles Lakers with food poisoning.
“[It was] something I ate in [San Francisco],” Thornton said before practice. “I guess it was lobster and mac and cheese. It didn’t do too well with my stomach. I feel 1,000 times better today.”
As a result of what Thornton calls "terrible timing," he technically counts Tuesday as his first official day with the team. He hopes to make his official Nets debut against the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday.
“The first day I got here I had to sit out because everything wasn’t done,” Thornton said. “So this is actually my first day. I’m very excited.”
Coach Jason Kidd offered a slightly more cautious perspective when asked about Thornton playing Wednesday.
“It’s a good sign, so we’ll just take one day at a time and see how practice goes,” Kidd said.
Thornton said the thing he looks forward to most is playing alongside the talented backcourt of Deron Williams and Joe Johnson. He has looked up to the duo since before he entered the league in 2009.
“I know [Williams] is a great point guard, been a great point guard for a long time,” Thornton said. “He’s one of the guards I watched growing up, so to be on the court with him is going to be great -- him and Joe [Johnson]. Joe is a guy I look at that’s been great in the league for a long time. To have those guys and learn from those guys is going to be great.”
Offensively, Thornton expects to fit right in as a spot-up shooter surrounding the Nets' core. In 46 games with the Sacramento Kings this season, he’s averaging 8.3 points on 38.1 percent shooting, 2.7 rebounds and 1.2 assists.
“When you have a great point guard like Deron Williams controlling the game and getting everybody open shots, it’s great,” Thornton said. “I’m looking forward to it.”
When asked about Shaun Livingston, who did not play against the Los Angeles Lakers Sunday because of a bruised tailbone, Kidd said will be a game-time decision against Portland.
“We’ll see if he goes through practice,” Kidd said.