BOSTON Following Friday night's 87-74 loss to Indiana, the Boston Celtics were in keep-your-head-up mode inside their locker room.
Phrases like "it's still early" and "no need to panic" were tossed around with the same kind of frequency as all of their missed shots.
And head coach Doc Rivers felt the same way.
But when talk turned towards the team's 4-4 record and a player said the C's were better than that, Rivers did not bite his tongue in disagreeing with that opinion.
"We're a 4-4 basketball team," Rivers said. "That's what we are. You are what your record is. Don't make no mistake about that."
Being a .500 team just eight games into the season is not reason to panic.
However, acknowledging who they are - a .500 team - is part of the process in moving forward from that position.
"You always have the ability to do something about that," Rivers said. "Right now, Indiana's a 5-2 team and we're a 4-4 team. That's who we are. That's not who we want to be, and that's not who we're going to be hopefully, but right now that's who we are."
Of the Celtics' first eight games, Indiana was clearly one of the tougher challenges even before the tip-off.
Losing to quality opponents like the Pacers or bad teams, doesn't really make much of a difference to Rivers.
"Well, we're 0-fer against quality opponents," Rivers said. "But again, it's eight games into the year, so I'm not going to overdo that."
Mike Giardi talks with Cedric Maxwell and Dan Shaughnessy about DeMarcus Cousins.
Jahlil Okafor isn't out of the picture for the Boston Celtics.
As the days get closer to the NBA trade deadline, the Celtics are mulling a number of trade options. And the Philadelphia 76ers aren't afraid to shop Okafor, according to ESPN's Marc Stein.
"Okafor is kind of still there," Stein said on ESPN's "Mike and Mike". "He's been so out there that you tend to think Philadelphia will find something in the next three days where they move him. I've heard that Boston has still given that some consideration. Chicago's another team that's been said to have shown some Okafor interest."
In his second season in Philadelphia, Okafor has seen a dip in his production after an impressive rookie season. His minutes have dropped from 30 to 23 per game, which explains his points falling from 17.5 to 11.4 per game and his rebounds falling from seven to 4.8 per game. He's shooting roughly the same from the field, however, and has a 51.1 field goal percentage during the 2016-17 season.
Okafor's season has taken a strange turn in recent weeks. The 6-foot-11 center did not travel with the team to face the Charlotte Bobcats on Feb. 13 amid trade interest. But Okafor then played with Philadelphia against the Boston Celtics in the ensuing game on Feb. 15.
"You can rest assured Philly's going to spend the next three-plus days trying to find a trade home for Jahlil Okafor because once the prospect of a trade has gone that far it's kind of hard to pretend it didn't happen," Stein said. "But at this point, as we stand, Philadelphia doesn't have an Okafor deal. And obviously another (option in) New Orleans, now that's not going to happen."