INDIANAPOLIS -- The Celtics and Pacers are currently slotted as playoff foes -- if the season ended Tuesday it would be the 2-7 matchup in the Eastern Conference -- but Boston coach Doc Rivers downplayed all the chatter about postseason prep with 23 games remaining in the season.
"We focus on that all year, to be honest," said Rivers. "We talk about it all year, every practice is a playoff practice. It’s silly to [focus on playoff prep] because you don’t know who you are playing until very late. I think every team is preparing -- they are not putting in any new stuff, or anything like that. I think you just slowly do it. But I don’t give it much thought."
Rivers stressed again that it's more important to him for his team to be healthy and playing well than worry about where the Celtics land on the playoff ladder.
"It's definitely more important to be right -- if you’re injured or not right, it doesn’t matter what seed you are, you’ll be going home soon," said Rivers. "So that’s No. 1. But obviously if you can get home court, you want it. I know we are close ... but at the end of the day, we have to take care of our own business. We just have to keep getting better and playing better. And all that other stuff will take care of itself."
Playing the second night of a back-to-back in Indiana, Rivers said he won't necessarily extend his rotation, especially after keeping minutes manageable during Tuesday's win in Philadelphia.
"A lot of guys didn’t play a lot of minutes last night," said Rivers. "It was 7 o'clock game, which was nice of [the league]. So we’ll see, that will be visual, more than -- there are certain games where you go into the game and you know you need to [limit minutes]. Tonight, I think our guys are pretty fresh. We’ve had a lot of days off, by the way, so I think our guys are pretty good."
Added Rivers: "We’re playing a certain amount of guys and we brought in more guys so we can extend the rotation on given nights. We’re still going to rest guys every once in a while -- Kevin [Garnett] and Paul [Pierce], and [Jason Terry] maybe -- but other than that, we’re just kinda plugging along; go one game at a time. We don’t talk a lot about anything else really, except for the next game. We’re pretty boring right now. Which is good."