Mike Gorman was on CSL the other day and mentioned how Doc Rivers has a growing reputation of calling fantastic plays coming out of the huddle. He just seems to be able to grasp the situation, understand his opponent, know how his own players are feeling, and call the right play at the right time.
Sounds like he did it again last night:
With the game tied at 111, the Celtics had trouble getting off a play and coach Doc Rivers called a timeout with 25.5 seconds to go and 6 seconds left on the shot clock.
The ball was eventually inbounded and quickly given to Pierce on the left wing. He looked at the shot clock, started a move to the basket and then pulled up for a sweet jumper that ripped the net.
There was another play shortly before that where Pierce created some space on the arch and found Ray Allen just as the defender was switchin off of Ray to help on Pierce. Ray caught and shot in perfect rhythm, ...just like it was drawn up.
Doc has his shortcomings, but it is a very good thing to have a coach that has a knack for calling the right play out of timeouts in critical moments. He's been doing it for years (even before the Big 3) and it doesn't always work out as planned, but more often than not it puts us in the right position to win.
Remember the classic game against Philly last month when Ray Allen hit two straight three-pointers, one to tie the game and one to win it? The first 15 seconds of the clip below shows the game-tying shot. The Celtics ran that exact play again for Ray Allen tonight, and it worked again, as Allen nailed the open three to tie the game. (Nice screens from Perk on both of these plays).
Dime Mag asked Doc about this topic a month ago:
Dime: Why are you so good at coming up with quick hitter plays at the end of games and during timeouts?
Doc Rivers: Well probably because I have three really good players. You know, that really helps. You just watch the game and try and get tendencies and then play from there. We have veterans, and that helps as well. Because when you have veterans who can think, you can draw up something that they’ve never seen before and you have a chance of running it.
Here's an article from last year highlighting some of Doc's playcalling.