[The Experimental McGee & Green - photo: K. Weidie]
Around 6:10pm, just 50 minutes before the Boston Celtics were to take on the Washington Wizards, a weary Doc Rivers stepped out of his office to meet with the media. He exchanged a few pleasantries with the familiar Boston media, and then he got right down to business and told everyone that Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen and Paul Pierce were going sit the game out. The starters were going to be Delonte West, Von Wafer, Jermaine O’Neal, Glen “Big Baby” Davis and Jeff Green.
This was a curious move considering the Celtics went into Monday night just one game behind the Miami Heat for the second seed in the NBA playoffs. The Heat had to visit Atlanta to play the Hawks, and the Celtics had a very winnable game (with their starters at least) against Wizards, who they had just beaten on Friday night. Rivers seemed to be prematurely conceding that second seed to the Heat by removing his starters from the equation. He explained his actions before the game.
“We’re gonna sit our guys today and try to get some rest and get ready for the playoffs. The way were playing, we do need it, so we’re going to take it, plus we don’t have a lot of time. We got Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday [to rest our starters] and then Wednesday could be a great practice, so I’ d rather do that…The decision ws made in how we played last night [Sunday night's 100-77 loss to Miami].”