How will Doc Rivers handle Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett the rest of the regular season?
Pierce is expected to play in Wednesday’s game against the Brooklyn Nets, though he said he’ll discuss with head coach Doc Rivers the possibility of resting at times over the final five games of the regular season.
“I’m going to leave that up to coach,” Pierce said. “Maybe I’ll talk to him, talk about these last five games, depending on how my body feels, depending on the seeding situation we’re in. We’ll figure something out.”
Rivers told reporters he does have a plan in place for resting Pierce and Kevin Garnett, who returned to the lineup Sunday following an eight-game absence due to inflammation in his left ankle, before the end of the season, but he wasn’t willing to disclose any details. The Celtics currently sit seventh in the Eastern Conference, and are 2½ games ahead of eighth-place Milwaukee. Rivers, while aware of the need to rest his veterans at times, doesn’t want to see his club drop to the eighth spot and set itself up for a first-round matchup with the Miami Heat.
“Obviously, we have to take care of our position,” Rivers said. “But, for Kevin, rest is always important, and Paul as well. But, other than that, we’ve thought about (resting them), we’ve talked about it.”
I’m expecting the full squad for Wednesday’s game vs Brooklyn. After that, your guess is as good as mine. Maybe Pierce plays 2 of the final 5 games and Garnett plays 3?
The Celtics are in Miami on Friday night and Orlando on Saturday night. Their final home game is next Tuesday vs Indiana and they close the season in Toronto next Wednesday.