Doc Rivers is sick of talking about Ray Allen and other notes from Friday
|10.26.12 at 9:25 pm ET|
WALTHAM — Doc Rivers will go with a rotation of starting lineups to start the season, the Celtics coach announced after practice Friday. Rajon Rondo, Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce are the certainties when healthy. Rivers said he will rotate Brandon Bass, Jeff Green and rookie Jared Sullinger in the other two spots, depending on various factors.
“Experience, size, it depends on the night,” Rivers said. “I don’t think we’re going to have one starting lineup this year. There’s three that I know of we’ll use. We can move it around.”
The Celtics featured a starting lineup of Rondo, Pierce, Garnett, Green and Bass in their preseason finale against the Sixers, with Sullinger and Courtney Lee seeing significant time as the first two players off the bench.
“We’re going to go the same. Early in year every year, I play 10 guys, whether we have a good 10 or not,” Rivers said with no hesitation. “Ten guys played last year because you have to get through the season, so it’ll be 10 this year for the most part.”
Meanwhile, Rivers said Friday afternoon after practice that he understands his players will be motivated to play the Heat and the Heat and Ray Allen will likely be motivated to play Boston in the season opener Tuesday night in Miami.
“I don’t mind that,” Rivers said. “I don’t think it’s Ray, honestly. I’ve said it before. There may be several guys who want to play against and Ray may want to play against several guys. This is not going to be a ‘Ray-versus-the-Celtics’ game. If it becomes that, we’re going to lose by a lot of points because as good as Ray is, I know of two guys for sure, probably three guys on that team that are a lot better on that team. If we’re focused on Ray, we’re going to lose by 40.”
Garnett is one of the players Rivers realizes will be focused, as Garnett made a point early in training camp of telling everyone that he had deleted his number from his phone when Ray rejected the Celtics offer and went to Miami to join forces with the champion Heat, led by LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.
Pressed more by reporters, Rivers said, “Guys I’m not going to get into Ray Allen stuff. Like I said [Thursday], Ray was great here. If Ray wants to talk, then I’ll let Ray do the talking. That’ll probably be better for all of us.”
Rivers said he’s also not using last year’s loss in seven games to the Heat in the Eastern finals as the ultimate motivation for one game.
“Honestly, it’ll be nice to win because we’ll be 1-0,” Rivers said. “But honestly for me, it goes no further than that.”
The team also officially released Rob Kurz and Micah Downs, bringing its roster down to 14. The move was a formality as Kris Joseph was informed after Thursday’s practice that he had made the team.
After practice, the Celtics raised over $700,000 for area children’s charities at their annual Shamrock Gala, benefitting the Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation, at the Renaissance Boston Waterfront Hotel on Friday night. Proceeds from the event benefit the focus partners of the Shamrock Foundation including Perkins School for the Blind, Boston Children’s Hospital, Horizons for Homeless Children, the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (MSPCC), and Berklee College of Music.
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