Garnett (hip flexor) out vs. Heat


Garnett (hip flexor) out vs. Heat

BOSTON It looks like the Big Threes of Miami and Boston will be reduced to only one player - Paul Pierce - tonight.

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said he will sit LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh tonight, while C's coach Doc Rivers plans to give Kevin Garnett the night off as well.

Ray Allen is still nursing a right ankle injury, and was not going to play regardless. The C's will also be without Mickael Pietrus (right knee) and Greg Stiemsma (sore feet) tonight, although Pietrus is expected to play Thursday against the Milwaukee Bucks.

The decision to sit Garnett (hip flexor) wasn't one that Rivers wanted to do.

In fact, it was Garnett who approached Rivers about not playing tonight.

"I wanted to play him tonight," Rivers said. "My choice was more tonight and give him a day off Thursday. Kevin never comes in and when he comes in and says, 'I think I need two more days,' that speaks volumes."

So Rivers once again finds himself adapting his line-up, on the fly.

"You have your plans and sometimes they don't work," Rivers said. "This is one of them. When we looked at the schedule two weeks ago, we thought if we could lock up our division, the Atlanta game was the smart game to sit (players) because you had the three days off and the Miami game would be a great game to get them playing again right after a practice. Well that sounded great and looked great until the real life part of it came in and guys just weren't ready."

Brady, Harbaugh found common ground on plane ride back from Michigan

Brady, Harbaugh found common ground on plane ride back from Michigan

FOXBORO -- What could have been an awkward plane ride for Tom Brady and John Harbaugh was made less so thanks to a high school lacrosse player. 

Brady and Harbaugh shared a private plane back from Michigan where Jim Harbaugh and his University of Michigan program put on an event for National Signing Day. About a year earlier, Brady told a room full of reporters that Harbaugh and his coaching staff should study the rule book and "figure it out" after hearing that they were pretty upset about the unusual formations the Patriots ran during their AFC Divisional Round win over Baltimore. 

They may not have been on the best of terms.

"I was pissed off," he told ESPN's Ian O'Connor before the start of this season. "It was uncalled for. And the rules are deeper than that, and I know the rules, and I stand by why that play shouldn't have been allowed. ... So yeah, that should never have been said."

But on the flight was Harbaugh's daughter Alison, a high school lacrosse player. When Brady took some time to share a few thoughts on competitiveness with her, he and Harbaugh found common ground.

"We had a lot of fun," Harbaugh said of the flight. "I don't know if he's talked about that at all, but we ended up sharing a plane ride along with my daughter and a couple of his people, friends of his. We just had a chance to just talk for a couple hours. And really more than anything, Alison got a chance to listen to Tom Brady talk about competing and what it takes to be great at what you do.

"And one of the funny things about it was, he was so nice to her. He gets off and they go, and we get back on the plane and we're talking, and she says something like, 'Boy, Tom really is a nice guy.' And I look at here and go, 'Tom?' I'm thinking 'Mr. Brady' would have been more appropriate. She said, 'He said to call me Tom.' I got a kick out of that.

"It was good. Lot of respect for him and a lot of respect for what he's accomplished. He's very tough to compete against. The best quarterback that's played, certainly in this era, without question in my mind. That's how I would rank him. And it's just another tough challenge to have to play against him."

Lowry, Sullinger and Blount interrupt interview with DeRozan

Lowry, Sullinger and Blount interrupt interview with DeRozan

DeMar DeRozan didn't get a chance to answer one question in his postgame interview before being interrupted by Kyle Lowry, Jared Sullinger, and LeGarrette Blount.