Pacers forward Caris LeVert was apart of the blockbuster trade that landed, James Harden, in a Brooklyn Nets uniform. LeVert, who was compared to Manu Ginobili by his former head coach Steve Nash was seen as one of the NBA’s rising stars and a leading candidate for the league’s Sixth Man of the Year award. Before the trade, the former University of Michigan standout was averaging 18.5 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 6.0 assists off the bench for the Nets.
Nets Make Tribute Video for Caris LeVert
To show their gratitude for the former Net, Brooklyn put together a tribute video for LeVert and aired it for him during his first return to the Barclays Center on Wednesday.
Being traded by the Nets may have been disappointing for LeVert initially, but he would later find out that the trade may have ultimately saved his life. Upon being traded to the Indiana Pacers, LeVert was required to pass a physical. The former Net thought that his examination was going to be routine, but an MRI revealed that LeVert had a small mass on his left kidney, something that may have never been discovered if not for the trade. LeVert is extremely grateful to the Nets organization.
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“It was up and down,” LeVert told reporters via YES Network. “I think it was nothing less than spectacular. I can’t thank them enough for welcoming myself, welcoming my family with open arms from day one. Through the losing streaks, through the injuries, through trades and losing teammates and stuff like that, through coaching changes I feel like they were always there, and I can’t thank them enough for that and I’ll always remember those fans, always remember that family and they’ll always definitely have a special place in my heart for sure.”
LeVert Receives Warm Welcome Home
When LeVert took the court at Barclays Center for the first time since being traded, he received a warm welcome home from his former teammates.
LeVert spent all four seasons of his young NBA career with the Nets. As much as we would like to believe otherwise, loyalty in sports is a myth. The NBA like any other job is a business. Nets’ General Manager Sean Marks knew that the more LeVert continued to improve as a player, the higher his trade value went. Marks was as transparent as he could be with his young star from day one about the possibility that he could be traded.
“When you have players such as Kevin and Kai who want to come and play for your city, I think that you can’t rule anything out when you’re in my position. So, I knew when those guys were coming to town that anything was possible,” LeVert told Kristian Winfield of the New York Daily News. “Sean was very honest with me from the first time the rumors kind