Celtics take Sunday off
May, 13, 2012
By Chris Forsberg | ESPNBoston.com
Brian Babineau/NBAE/Getty ImagesThis about sums up Doc Rivers' reaction to the Celtics-76ers series spacing.On the heels of Saturday's Game 1 triumph over the Philaldelphia 76ers, the Boston Celtics did not practice Sunday, electing instead to stick with their postseason plan of maximizing rest in quick turnaround situations.
Celtics coach Doc Rivers expressed mild frustration before Saturday's Game 1 with how the Round 2 schedule was constructed. Rivers offered dissatisfaction in the fact that Miami (defeated Knicks in five games; the final of which was Wednesday) and Indiana (defeated the Magic in five games; the final of which was Tuesday) were slated to open their Eastern Conference semifinal series Sunday, a day after Boston and Philadelphia, both of whom wrapped their series on Thursday night, allowing a mere one-day break before launching into the Eastern Conference semifinals.
What's more, there is only a one-game break between each of the first four games, this despite the fact that, from the end of Game 4 to a potential Game 7, there's a total of eight days of spacing.
"I was surprised honestly, and I’m sure (Sixers coach) Doug (Collins) was surprised as well," Rivers said. "Hell, Miami and Indiana have been off, and they are playing on Sunday. But what surprised me more was that the first four games are every other day. I couldn’t have prescribed a worse solution for us, at least. I don’t know about Philly, but for us, I was very surprised by that."
The veteran-led Celtics entered the series nursing injuries to key players, including Paul Pierce (left MCL sprain) and Ray Allen (bone spurs in right ankle), and the schedule will offer them minimal rest and recovery over the first four games.
The schedule is determined in large part by television and, with C's-76ers being a less-than-glamorous series, the games landed on many of the not-so-marquee nights.
"Like I told our guys, nobody cares," Rivers said. "You've got to go play. That’s just the way it is."
The Celtics host the 76ers in Game 2 on Monday night at TD Garden.