BOSTON - Kevin Garnett saluted the TD Garden crowd not long after Celtics public address announcer Eddie Palladino bellowed his name in pregame introductions, acknowledging Boston fans for what could be the final time.
Garnett, 38, who won an NBA title with the Celtics in 2008, didn't deny wondering if he has played his last game in the arena he called home for six seasons.
"At this stage, it's always somewhere lurking in the back, whether I admit it or not," Garnett said after contributing six points and four rebounds in 16:54 in the Nets' 109-107 victory. "It crosses [my mind]. I won't lie about that."
Garnett's minutes have decreased the last few weeks and he hasn't played in both ends of recent back-to-backs. He's averaging 7.5 points and 7.9 rebounds, slightly better than last season's career lows.
Garnett doesn't know if he'll call it a career when the season ends. "I like to say that I treat each year as its own and then assess it at the end of the year," he said.
Deron mum on rumors
Deron Williams, back after missing the previous two games with a right calf strain, shrugged off trade rumors. Although the Nets' discussions with the Kings regarding Williams supposedly have cooled, Williams' name came up again this week because he's reportedly the most likely of the Nets' Big Three to be traded.
"When a trade happens," he said, "then I'll talk about trade rumors because then it would actually be a trade."
Williams, who came off the bench to contribute eight points and four assists in 20:53, said he's fine with being a reserve at the moment.
"The first group is going together well right now. There's no reason to change anything," he said. "It doesn't really matter to me. I'm still trying to get my rhythm back. Obviously, I'm on a minutes restriction right now, so I'm all for it."