WALTHAM The Boston Celtics will have an additional guest with them for their playoff series against Atlanta - Flip Saunders.
The former Washington Wizards coach, who also coached Kevin Garnett for a number of years in Minnesota, will be traveling with the team when they face the Atlanta Hawks in their first-round playoff series that will begin on Sunday in Atlanta.
While the move may seem a bit unusual, here are a couple things to keep in mind.
Rivers has had an open door policy for fired coaches to come around his team during the season. Often they come to practices, but with the condensed schedule there have been few opportunities for that this season.
Saunders and Rivers are also good friends who have bounced ideas off one another for quite some time. Having Saunders around won't usurp any power from the current coaching staff.
More than anything, Saunders will be a consultant to the coaching staff, providing insight that could prove extremely beneficial in what may be a tougher playoff series than most might anticipate.
And despite his struggles in Washington that ultimately led to him being fired, Saunders is still considered one of the better offensive minds in the NBA. His best work has come with veteran-rich teams; a team like the Celtics.
While Rivers has certainly proven his acumen in terms of drawing up plays, he is well aware that having another set of eyes and ears around - and of course, someone he trusts - can do nothing but help the Celtics in their quest to bring home Banner 18.