Garnett refused to sit against Bulls

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Garnett refused to sit against Bulls

BOSTON Seeing Kevin Garnett deliver such a strong performance down the stretch would not have come about had Doc Rivers had his wishes.
In fact, Rivers actually gave serious thought to sitting Garnett out for the C's game at Charlotte on Monday.
"I really was mad at myself because I had written down right after the Denver game, 'make him stay in Boston; don't even let him go to Charlotte,'" Rivers said. "And I kind of let everyone talk me into it. I didn't even think he should've played in that game."
The loss at Charlotte came less than 24 hours after the Celtics squeaked out a triple overtime win against Denver, a game in which Garnett played a season-high 47 minutes.
"I thought that three-overtime game, plus that game, flying back, getting in late, I just thought he didn't have legs," Rivers said.
Rivers made a conscious effort to rest Garnett early against the Bulls, evident by him playing just 10 minutes in the first half.
"Fortunately we rested him just enough that he was strong enough down the stretch," Rivers said.
Following the win, Garnett acknowledged that Rivers did give him the option of taking Wednesday's game off.
But as Garnett looked around that injury-riddled locker room, he knew in good conscious that somehow, he had to get on the floor and do whatever he could to help the C's go into the All-Star break with some momentum.
"I've seen everybody playing through everything, and I'm no different than that," Garnett said. "Paul's tired, everybody's tired, and no one's full energy right now, so I felt like that was unfair. If he wasn't going to give everyone the night off, then that wasn't an option. I just came out and gave what I could."
And like many nights during his five-plus seasons in Boston, Garnett's best was good enough for the Celtics to be successful.
"Nobody in this league at this point in the season is playing 100 percent," Garnett said. "Everybody, me included, and guys in this locker room and the other locker room, so just fight all through it and play."
Despite playing just 26 minutes, Garnett still managed to tally 12 points and 11 rebounds for his 15th double-double this season.
Garnett was especially effective in the fourth in which he scored eight points.

Tyronn Lue says Celtics harder to defend than Warriors: 'They're running all kinds of s---'

Tyronn Lue says Celtics harder to defend than Warriors: 'They're running all kinds of s---'

The Golden State Warriors are the least of Tyronn Lue's worries, Cleveland Cavaliers coach explained Tuesday.

Even though Lue and the Cavs are up 3-1 in the Eastern Conference Finals, he is apparently overwhelmed with the Boston Celtics to the point where he isn't even thinking about Steph Curry, Kevin Durant and the 67-win Warriors.

"We're just focused on Boston," Lue said of the Warriors following the Cavs' Game 4 win, via ESPN.com. "The stuff they're running, it's harder to defend than Golden State's [offense] for me, as far as the actions and all the running around and all the guys who are making all the plays, so it's a totally different thing."

No, seriously.

"Like, they hit the post, Golden State runs splits and all that stuff, but these guys are running all kinds of s---," Lue said of Boston coach Brad Stevens' schemes. "I'll be like, 'F---.' They're running all kinds of s---, man. And Brad's got them moving and cutting and playing with pace, and everybody is a threat. It's tough, you know, it's tough."

Without Isaiah Thomas, the Celtics finished Game 4 with four players who had 15 points or more. They also had six players who scored double digits in Boston's Game 3 win. Avery Bradley, Marcus Smart, Kelly Olynyk, Jae Crowder and Al Horford have made heavy offensive contributions. And they not just scoring. The Celtics are working hard off the ball by setting screens and cutting to the hoop to pressure the Cavaliers defense.

The Celtics may not have the Warriors' star power -- but Stevens and Boston are still managing to leave Lue in a state of clear befuddlement after a win.

LeBron James praised Stevens more directly when discussing how the Celtics "run different things" after losing Thomas to injury.

"So they had to kind of reshape, and that’s the beauty of having Brad Stevens as your coach," James told reporters. "You’re able to reshape what you do offensively and still be in a good rhythm. It’s been challenging for us to kind of — plays out of time-out, kind of been killing us on ATOs and keeping us off balance, but in the second half we kind of got a little bit of rhythm, and think we’ll be better in Game 5."