Rivers on Rose injury: 'I hated it'

Dennis Wierzbicki/US Presswire

Chicago's Derrick Rose is helped off the court Saturday after tearing his ACL.ATLANTA -- Celtics coach Doc Rivers expressed disappointment in the season-ending ACL injury sustained by Bulls point guard Derrick Rose during the team's Game 1 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday.

"Sad. I hated it," Rivers said. "I talked to [Bulls coach and former Celtics assistant Tom Thibodeau] for a long time last night. You hate to see that. He’s a good kid and, it doesn’t matter if he’s not, you don’t want anybody to get injured. That’s just tough. You know my rule: You go down and there’s nobody around, it’s a bad injury. [Rose], [Iman] Shumpert -- it’s just tough to see that."

The Celtics and Bulls would meet in the Eastern Conference semifinals if top seeds take care of business in the opening round, but Rivers dismissed the idea of both looking ahead or acknowledging that the playoff road might have gotten easier to navigate.

"We've got to play the Hawks, that’s our focus," Rivers said.

Rivers also took umbrage with those that have lamented Rose being on the court at the time of his injury. Rose suffered the injury while trying to leap off his left foot in the lane with 1:22 left in Saturday's 103-91 victory.

"That’s ridiculous," Rivers said. "You want to win the game. Heck, [the 76ers] cut the lead -- it’s ridiculous."