"For our team, it's a great thing to just hang around," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "It's what we've been all year; we're just hanging around. And we stole this game."
"I had drawn up another play and Armond Hill walked over and -- he rarely does it -- he said, ‘Hey, listen, the play you drew up from the first half worked, let’s run it again,’" explained Rivers. "And so I switched to the play he wanted me to run. And it was great, it worked out perfectly."
"It was executed great," Rivers said. "We got it down to the last second. Either Kevin was going to try and hit Jeff or [hit Paul Pierce]. The whole play was [made] by Paul Pierce’s back pick. He was terrific. He set a nice back pick. They [Pacers] got a little mixed and then Jeff had to make a tough shot. They doubled Kevin so the pass was a little bit off-mark and Jeff had to adjust but it’s great when you win on execution.
"This is the time when teams start peaking, regardless," he said. "When you’re 57, 60 games in, you’re going to know one way or the other. It’s time that we knew what we were trying to do out there, who we’re trying to get the ball to. This is the time to start peaking."
Kevin Garnett, whose 13-rebound performance against Golden State Friday moved him past Hakeem Olajuwon into 11th place on the NBA’s all-time rebounding list, leapfrogged into 10th place with 10 rebounds against the Pacers last night. This time he passed Wes Unseld. These are big names, as the Celtics center is well aware.
Reason for concern? "Just a little bruise, it happened [Tuesday] night [in Philadelphia]," Pierce said. "I played, so it’s not a problem." True, but Pierce labored, missing 11 of the 15 shots he put up while posting 13 points, eight rebounds and four assists over 33 minutes, 48 seconds.