The preseason is made for stuff like this. Doc is biding his time by experimenting with different lineups. This would have scared me 3 years ago. Now, not so much.
Celtics coach Doc Rivers has been described by Rasheed Wallace as a "mad scientist’’ for his experimenting with lineups. And Rivers is apparently ready to go with a mixture in which 6-foot-5-inch Ray Allen would be the shortest Celtic on the court.
Late in the opening quarter yesterday, Boston’s lineup was Allen and Marquis Daniels at guard, and Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Wallace in the frontcourt. On the first sequence with that lineup, the Celtics made a stop and turned it into a fast-break layup by Allen. Then Daniels posted Jose Calderon, drawing a foul and extending the lead to 29-19 with 1:37 left in the quarter. That caused Toronto to pull Calderon and go with a Jarrett Jack-Sonny Weems backcourt.
But Rivers backed off from his pregame promise of going with an even taller lineup.
"I didn’t want to do that,’’ Rivers said. "I thought the bigs were playing too well and I didn’t want to screw them up, put one of them at the ‘3,’ so I actually liked the one ‘big’ lineup and that was good enough for me.’’
Before the game, Rivers said of the proposed "big’’ lineup, which would pair Daniels and Pierce in the backcourt, with Garnett, Kendrick Perkins, and Wallace up front: "We may not get up and down the court very quickly, but at least we’ll be big.’’
Honestly I don't think these lineups are all that odd. I mean, if Daniels is going to be the defacto backup point, there will be times when it will only make sense to put him on the court with these guys. And even a huge lineup with KG at the 3 isn't all that nutty (as long as KG is feeling healthy). There are times when KG acts like a 3 anyway. Whatever. Experiment away Doc.