The Celtics swiped home-court advantage from the Magic in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals, in part because Vince Carter was the only person in a Magic uniform who could hit a shot. Carter finished with 23 points, one more than fellow 1998 draft alum Paul Pierce, to continue his strong postseason run.
When the Magic traded Courtney Lee and spare parts to the Nets for Vince Carter after last season, essentially replacing Hedo Turkolgu with the fifth pick from the 1998 NBA draft, fans of the Magic weren't exactly unanimous in their support. Here's a sampling of what SportsNation commenters had to say at the time.
Yet Carter was the one guy that even Bill Simmons credited with a consistent effort against the Celtics in Game 1, even if it came in a tweet harkening back to Carter's reputation for past no-show performances. That has us wondering, as the Eastern Conference finals roll along, which 1998 draft alum has enjoyed a better career to date?
The funniest thing about the Carter deal... is STILL having to listen about how Hedo is "better" than he is..... I still LMMFAO every single damn time I hear that GARBAGE!!! Vince seems to be on a mission since his 1st round disaster against the Bobcats, and I honestly believe he WILL lead Orlando to their 1st NBA Championship!!!” -- pd_gator