"It's a huge part," he said. "It's kind of reminding me that I'm playing at home. In the lockout year I played back in Moscow and I feel so great that I had Russian friends and all the fans. Everybody speaks Russian. It makes you feel like you are home."
Taking such a big pay cut certainly was a part of the discussions he had with his wife and children about the move. But they looked at living in New York, playing for Prokhorov and playing with a star-studded team that also includes Deron Williams, Brook Lopez and Joe Johnson, and decided they couldn't pass it up.
"I understand the money is not that great, is not what I could have made," Kirilenko said. "If you take a look at the situations, 10 years ago, I'm not sure I would've taken that deal. Right now it was certainly best option possible to take the chance and win the trophy. I'm not saying we're going to win. ... But for first time in my career I'm starting the season when I know we have a chance to win the whole thing."
Follow Jon Krawczynski on Twitter: http://twitter.com/APKrawczynski
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