Doc Rivers (again) discusses minutes

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Remember last night, when Doc Rivers put KG, Paul, Perk and Rondo back into the game with about six minutes left and approximately a 20-point lead?  If you were like me, you wondered 1) What the hell is Doc Rivers doing?, 2) Does Doc think the C's actually have a chance to lose this game?, and 3) Does Doc realize KG, Ray and Paul aren't 25 anymore, and need rest whenever they can get it?

Well, apparently Doc does realize they aren't 25, even though he does a good job sometimes of pretending he doesn't:

Via the Herald:
Doc Rivers acknowledged that alloting minutes has been a challenge.

“It’s a fine line,” the Celtics coach said before the game. “You can’t shut them down from practice or game minutes. They need both of them. But there’s a line you can go over that hurts them.

“(Rajon) Rondo and Perk you don’t worry about, but the other three you do. It’s a work in progress so far.

“We’ve been good with Kevin - he’s at a career-low right now in minutes played. But where we struggle at times with Ray (Allen) and Paul (Pierce) - it’s one or the other who plays more minutes than we probably want them to.”
Doc, you've had three years to figure this out.  You have the deepest team you've ever had, and Marquis Daniels is a guy who can spell both Ray and Paul.  It's not like you have to put Tony Allen out there anymore.  Whenever you see Ray or Paul on the court for too long, just look down the bench, call Marquis or Eddie House's name, and tell them to check in at the scorer's table.

It isn't rocket science.  At this point, the C's should be more interested in resting their three Hall-of-Famers rather than trying to win meaningless early-season games.  Doc has been better at allotting minutes, but putting his starters back into a blowout with six minutes left isn't the way to keep their minutes down.

In Doc's defense, his substitutions last night weren't indefensible either.  The bench looked dreadful in that fourth quarter, and Doc didn't want things to get too sloppy, even in a win.

Still, Doc, just keep them on the bench in blowouts.  Methinks it's worth a little sloppy play to give your aging superstars a rest.


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