Doc Rivers and some of the Celtics were at the Patriots’ big win over the Texans last night. At today’s practice, Greg Payne reports that Doc was very impressed with what he saw at Foxboro last night:
Rivers received the full-access treatment Monday, getting to hang out with Pats coach Bill Belichick on the field prior to kickoff and even sitting in on the team’s offensive meeting before the game.
“I love watching that team play. I was telling our guys that today,” Rivers said. “It’s just really awesome watching them, how they execute, how professional they are. Every time I go to a Patriots game I get so much out of it. I got to sit in their offensive game plan meeting before they went out on the field and it’s just really cool.
“It’s a neat atmosphere,” he added. “You can’t be around it enough. You really can’t.”
Rivers said the Patriots’ execution has always stuck out to him and that attention to detail is something he tries to take away from watching games.
“Well to me, the execution, and how serious [they are], and how they prepare for it,” Rivers said of what he can learn from watching.
“Obviously it’s different. They have one game to prepare for a week. It does make a big difference. When we have five in a week or four in a week, it’s a little harder to do. But, just everybody knows their job, and they do their job. It’s just really a neat atmosphere… The Patriots, to me, do it on a different level. It’s fun to be around.”
The Celtics and Pats teams’ of the last few seasons are quite similar in some ways. They’ve both kept a core of veteran leaders around, as well as the same coaching staff. That’s just something that money can’t buy-a nucleus of top-notch players, both on the field/court and in the locker room. And of course the family like relationships between players and coaches. Doc and Belichick are tight. Bill’s been seen at quite a few Celtics games during Doc’s tenure, and when he comes to the Garden, he gets the same unfiltered access:
Rivers didn’t disclose details of his conversation with Belichick prior to the game, but acknowledged the budding relationship they share.
“It’s very good, very good. We talk,” Rivers said. “I go to things, he comes to our stuff at times and watches. He comes in the locker room. So, it’s a very, very, very good relationship.”
Today’s practice focused on getting guys’ “wind back” and also more work on the pick & roll defense. Going on a nice little run is also in the forefront of both Doc and the players’ minds:
“We haven’t had a stretch this year where we’ve put anything together, and we need to do that at some point,” said Rivers.
Echoed guard Jason Terry: “Right now we’re just concerned about us and stringing together some games. We’ve won one, lost one, won one. We’ve got to put together three, four, five games in a row, so that’s where our focus is right now.”
They’ve certainly challenged themselves in that aspect, as 7 of the teams’ next 10 games come on the road. After playing the Mavs tomorrow night at TD Garden, Boston heads to Texas for a back-to-back w/a tough Houston team and the surging Spurs. Then, the C’s get a couple of days to rest, and it’s off to the Windy City for a game with the Bulls. Two home games against the Bucks & Cavs that you would think the C’s could circle as wins follow that, then it’s the highly anticipated rematch with the Nets on Christmas. A West Coast trip to play the Clippers, GSW & SacTown is what’s on tap for Boston after Christmas Day. Here’s Doc & Rondo meeting with the media today, also courtesy of ESPN Boston: