As Kyrie Irving freely admits, he’s heard boos in a healthy cross section of arenas.

But before the Garden crowd rallied as the Celtics turned Wednesday night’s 117-109 loss to the Knicks into a game, they unloaded during a demoralizing first half marked by languid, uninspired play by the home team – a sound Irving and his teammates have seldom heard on Causeway Street.

The Celtics are now 9-9, and were treated like it.

“This is the NBA. Fans deserve to see a great show,” Irving said. “They deserve to see balls going in the rim and us getting stops. Kind of Celtic Pride plays. I understand what you’re saying in terms of it being TD (Garden) but they expect us to play hard. And we deserve that as players, and our coaching staff and everyone.”

IRVING STEPS BACK: While some of Irving’s teammates talked of reflecting over Thanksgiving dinner, the Celtics guard had a different perspective. As someone who is part Native American through his late mother, Elizabeth Larson, Irving loathes the holiday for what it represents to his people.

So when asked about Thanksgiving on Wednesday night, Irving wanted none of it.

He cursed the holiday, saying, “I don’t celebrate Thanksgiving. (Expletive) Thanksgiving.”

On Thursday, Irving took a bit of the edge off.

“I spoke w/frustration after last nights game and spoke words that shouldn’t be in a professional setting no matter what” he wrote in the first of two tweets.

In the second, Irving added, “Meant no disrespect to the Holiday and those who celebrate it respectfully. I’m grateful for the time We all can share with our families. We are always ONE.”

BAYNES STARTS: Coach Brad Stevens repeated himself Wednesday, starting Aron Baynes for the second time in as many games and bringing Gordon Hayward off the bench.

The Celtics’ coach admits the move – an adjustment designed to blend Hayward in with different combinations, and most notably forward Marcus Morris – could be considered counterintuitive. After all, the Celtics’ greatest need during their current 3-7 slump wasn’t additional defense, which is what Baynes adds to the starters.

“There’s a lot of factors that go into those calls,” Stevens said. “If you looked at our rankings right now you’d say, ‘Why would you start a defender with the first group? Because the first group is guarding great and the second group’s guarding great.’

“I think it allows guys to play on offense in their more natural positions and there’s a comfort level to that, and as we continue to try to grow and get to the best version of ourselves, we’re going to have to be able to play both ways,” the coach added. “We’re going to have to be able to play small. We’re going to have to be able to play big. But maybe guys can find a bit more of a flow to that.”

Stevens is instead looking for general improvement beyond who he happens to start on a given night.

“Over the course of the whole year, as far as numbers go it’s been pretty productive,” he said. “We can play better as a team and that’s our focus. A lot of time and energy can be spent talking about starters and bench, and we just have to talk about our team. Playing a little bit better on both sides of the ball – got closer to that on Monday (in Charlotte).”

WHILE SOME young Boston players clearly got off to a slow start this season, Jayson Tatum, in particular, appears to be getting up to speed.

“Yeah, he’s attacking the basket more,” Stevens said. “If he attacks the basket, I think that the more we can get him attacking the basket, I think the more threat of going to the free-throw line, the more a threat of drawing multiple defenders for kickouts, and I just think that opens up everything for everybody. He’s such a talented offensive guy that that’s a huge thing for us as a team, as you know. We haven’t been great in the paint and we certainly haven’t gotten to the line, so we need our most talented offensive people to be able to get there some.

“I think toward the end of the West Coast road trip and in the last few games, you could see that he’s really starting to make good strides.”

THE KNICKS could tell Stevens a thing or three about ever-changing lineups.

Coach David Fizdale has used six different starting lineups since the start of the season.

THE DAY after Thanksgiving is a time when the Celtics and Bruins combine for a doubleheader at the Garden, but not this year.

The Celtics begin a three-game trip in Atlanta against the Hawks on Friday night while the Bruins will be at home to play the Pittsburgh Penguins.

According to research done by Celtics vice president of media services Jeff Twiss, it marks the first time since 1967 that the team will not be home the day after Thanksgiving.

The trip continues in Dallas and New Orleans before the next home game a week from Friday against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

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