|Rick Pitino at Basketball Hall of Fame induction ceremony: ‘I learned patience, humility’ from rough stint with Celtics||09.09.13 at 11:11 am ET|
The Basketball Hall of Fame inducted seven former players and four coaches on Sunday, including former Celtics coach Rick Pitino.
Pitino enters the Hall of Fame more for his work as a college coach than as a professional coach.
He has won national championships with Kentucky (1996) and Louisville (2013), appeared in seven Final Fours — including an improbable 1987 run with Providence that earned him NABC and John Wooden National Coach of the Year honors — and amassed 662 victories in 27 seasons.
“Coaches don’t just get into the Hall of Fame. Players put them into the Hall of Fame,” Pitino said at his induction ceremony in Springfield.
For all the success he enjoyed at the collegiate level — including his start at Boston University from 1978 until 1983 — his coaching resume will always have a blip because of his forgettable experience with the Celtics.
Pitino took over as coach of the C’s in 1997. His stint lasted 3½ years, and his teams posted a 102-146 record during that time.
When Pitino was hired in 1997, not only did he take over as coach, he also became the team’s general manager, CEO and president. This complete control caused intense scrutiny for the former UMass guard when the wheels fell off.
“You may wonder what I learned about the Boston Celtics. I am really, really grateful to them. I learned more than I gave,” Pitino said. “I didn’t give too much except leaving Jim O’Brien to master the helm. But I learned patience, humility, and a lot of people think it’s because of losing that you learn humility and it’s a major factor. I gained the humility because I had the greatest treat for four years.”
|Doc Rivers on D&C: ‘This is the time of year where you really want your team together’||04.11.13 at 10:55 am ET|
Celtics coach Doc Rivers made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Thursday morning and discussed Wednesday night’s loss to the Nets, the team field trip to view the movie “42,” and Louisville’s victory over Michigan in the NCAA championship game.
With their most recent loss, the C’s are nearly locked into the No. 7 seed for the playoffs, and will most likely be taking on the Knicks. Though his team’s fate is all but sealed, Rivers said he thinks the last few regular-season games are very important.
“It’s interesting because you’re still concerned about a couple of guys’ rests,” Rivers said. “It’s tough to accomplish things when you’re looking for that. But as far as our practices and our shootarounds, we’re working extremely hard right now on our rhythm, and I think we’re starting to get that.”
In the C’s 101-93 loss to Brooklyn, they did not attempt a single free throw in the first half and were outscored from the line 25-13 for the game.
“I don’t think the officials had anything to do with that,” Rivers said. “I thought there was one play where Jeff Green drove, I thought it was his only drive in the first half, and I thought he got fouled on a shooting foul and didn’t get [the call]. Other than that, it was us. I’ve always said it, that the aggressor gets the calls. It’s human nature and I thought the Nets were attacking and attacking and we didn’t.”
On one of the team’s recent off days, Rivers decided to take his team to a pre-screening of the movie “42.” The film, which is about the life of Jackie Robinson, is being released in North America on Friday.
“They enjoyed it,” Rivers said. “I thought it was a really neat movie. I thought a lot of guys, you could just see their interest in it, so it was a good thing.”
Added Rivers of his reasoning behind the experience: “I didn’t think we should practice, No. 1. But I thought we should be together. I think this is the time of year where you really want your team together as much as possible, just with each other. I didn’t know if it would be motivational, but I thought it would just be learning, it’s a learning experience.”