Sports

Kyrie Irving’s pretty happy to be in ‘a real, live sports city’

Boston, MA: October 2, 2017: The Celtics Kyrie Irving (right) dribbles by head coach Brad Stevens (left) during first quarter action. The Boston Celtics hosted the Charlotte Hornets in a pre season NBA basketball game at the TD Garden. (Jim Davis/Globe Staff).
jim davis/globe staff
Kyrie Irving has quickly learned to appreciate the vibrant sports culture of Boston.

After just three weeks, Kyrie Irving has made it clear he prefers Boston over Cleveland as a city. He lauded Boston and its sports culture Wednesday, just days before he will return to Cleveland for the first time as an opposing player in the season opener.

“I just moved in to a whole new place, I’ve been there a month or so. I’m becoming very well acclimated to what is going on; our schedule and how it best fits for me to be the best I can be,” Irving told reporters prior to the Celtics’ shootaround in Charlotte, N.C. “I’ll have enough off days to figure out the city.”

Irving’s father Drederick, was a standout player at Boston University and he has spent considerable time in the city.

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“It’s exciting to be back on the East Coast,” Irving said. “It’s fast-paced. A lot of different cultures, food, and people. You get it all, especially in Boston. I was talking to my best friend the other day: It’s a really major city. Coming from Cleveland, the Midwest, where the culture is different. And then you move to the East Coast — into Boston — and it’s so real [and] alive. An ongoing, thriving city. Consistently. No matter what hour throughout the night.

“You would go to Cleveland, and it would be at nighttime, and things would be going on, but you just see a vast difference in terms of what the Midwest is — Cleveland — and what Boston is. Boston, I’m driving in and [thinking], ‘I’m really playing in a real, live sports city?’ And a great city.”

Gary Washburn can be reached at gwashburn@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @GwashburnGlobe.