|Doc on KG: ‘He wasn’t thrilled’||12.22.09 at 11:37 pm ET|
Doc Rivers was asked the most obvious question in his post-game news conference on Tuesday.
What was the deal with the late scratch of Kevin Garnett from the lineup with a right knee bruise and was it related to the knee injury of last year?
“Well I made up – I didn’t tell the players at all,” Rivers said. “I never told them. They were – it was funny, because I don’t think they realized it, maybe until the starting lineup and until Kevin didn’t come out on the floor. I just didn’t think it was anything – I didn’t want them thinking. I just wanted them to go out and play. And I decided when we went in that walk-through right before. Just the way he was walking. And I just told Rasheed (Wallace) and Kevin to switch spots. And I hadn’t told Kevin at that point. I just told him to go to the second unit; let Rasheed walk through the stuff. And then after that I told him that I was shutting him down.
Rivers admitted that Garnett wasn’t too happy with not playing.
“Ah, he wasn’t thrilled with it, but I think he’s better this year than he was last year,” Rivers said. “You know, yesterday he actually sat down in the practice and Paul (Pierce) walked over to him and said, ‘Wow, someone’s growing up.’ You know, instead of fighting through it. He’s such a – has that warrior mentality, sometimes it’s to his detriment. And yesterday he did a good job. You know he wanted to fight it today and then he kind of just said, ‘You’re right.’”
And when did Garnett get hurt?
“Since Memphis,” Rivers added. “He said that’s where he got it hit. And of course he hadn’t told anyone until I think today, or yesterday he told (trainer) Eddie (Lacerte).”