"I like the fact that we won last night. Back-to-back, on the road, obviously, is tough," said Collins. "It's a great place, a lot of energy. But I told our guys, Kevin Garnett's played over 51,000 minutes in his career; Paul Pierce, I think, 48,000; Jason Terry, 38,000; and Rondo about 15,000. So, I mean, I'm sure their crowd is going to lift them, but I mean, if we're looking out there, there's no reason those guys should be fresher than us. Not with the amount of playoff games, the amount of minutes they've put into this league."
Collins wasn't far off. Combining regular-season and playoff minutes, Garnett is at 51,152; Pierce at 43,581; Terry at 37,901; and Rondo at 18,362. That's 150,996 total minutes for four of Boston's core players.
And Celtics coach Doc Rivers admitted he didn't have much of a comeback to Collins' suggestion his players have a lot of miles on their tires.
"He’s probably right. But I don’t want to go in our locker room and tell them that," joked Rivers. "Maybe I should. But, listen, he’s right. When you’re right, you’re right."
Rivers suggested that Boston would have to lean on its experience obtained during all those floor minutes to account for any physical struggles exhibited while playing on consecutive days.
Collins, never afraid to toss around some highly accurate numbers while meeting with the media, said he looked those numbers up himself in order to highlight Boston's age to his team.
"Just to let our guys know," said Collins. "Just let them know."
Later, after pointing to some of Boston's offensive numbers, Collins explained his focus on numbers: "It's my TV background. It's what I always did with TV. What I tried to do was, when I broadcast games, I thought it was important to give the viewers something they could hang their hat on every night. So let's take a look at these and see how you do. I've always felt that with Boston, when they're efficient offensively, they're awfully hard to beat."