The rundown (a quick look at pregame headlines)
Doc's opinion on KG's fine? He can't offer it
Celtics coach Doc Rivers might have had an opinion on Kevin Garnett getting fined $25,000 by the league for criticizing officials following Wednesday's loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder. But to protect his own wallet, he didn't offer his thoughts before Friday's game.
"I'm not going to give my opinion, because I want to keep my money," joked Rivers.
Rivers kept the entire conversation about the fine light. Asked if Garnett's comments, which seemed largely innocuous save for a curse word in the middle, deserved such a fine, Rivers blamed the media for asking the question.
"I blame you guys, but I blame you for everything, it's easier that way," said Rivers. "It's a tough one. I got one last year in the playoffs when someone asked me, 'Do you think [Kendrick Perkins is] targeted [by officials]?' I said, 'Yeah,' and I got fined.
"So the next time that happens, I have a solution. I think each of you guys should pitch in $1,000 until we get to [$25,000] or [$35,000]."
Rivers was then asked if players and coaches actually have to send a real check to the league when they are fined.
"No, they take it right out -- trust me," Rivers said to laughter. "If we had to write a check, they'd never get it. It comes right out... They take it from the team. The check I get says minus-25 on it, or something like that."
So should players be allowed to voice their opinions more freely?
"I think we should be allowed to say what we want," said Rivers. "We'd all be happy and [reporters] would be thrilled. But we can't, so that's the league we're in."
Then Rivers walked right into his own pun by closing the conversation by noting, "I'm fine with it, for the most part."
On the rebound: Perk glad he rested his knee
Celtics center Kendrick Perkins admitted the team had to pretty much force him to the sideline when he missed two games last week to combat left knee tendinitis that had been bothering him for as much as two months. But he's glad he heeded their advice.
"I feel a lot better," Perkins said before Friday's game. "I think it helped me. I feel a lot better than where I was. That time off helped, and I just need to continue to get treatment and go from there."
Perkins said he doesn't envision a situation whereby he'd need to rest again before the postseason and went out of his way to stress that the injury isn't something that should cause anyone to lose sleep over.
"It’s not a big deal, it's not like it's a torn meniscus or something like that," said Perkins. "It's just tendinitis, it's nothing serious to panic or worry about."
Perkins registered 6 points and 6 rebounds over 22 minutes in Wednesday's loss to the Thunder. Rivers noted the team will slowly ramp his minutes back up, particularly as the season nears.
"He looked great and he was active," said Rivers. "His minutes are still lower, but we will start creeping his minutes back up, slowly. We don't want to throw him into a 40-minute game any time soon. We do need to get them back up so because, when the playoffs come, and we shorten other minutes, while extending our starters and some of the guys on the bench, he'll be one of them."
Rivers saluted Perkins' warrior mentality, but did admit he might have waited a little too long to disclose the tendinitis.
"That's the kinda guy you want, in a lot of ways," said Rivers. "But in this case, he went too far. I don't know what the time [he waited too long was] -- one, two, or three weeks, but it went too long without alerting us. Tendinitis is something only the player knows."