Celtics coach Doc Rivers joined Dennis & Callahan on Tuesday morning to discuss the state of the Celtics, who are coming off Sunday's blowout loss to the Pistons that dropped them to 6-5.
"Too early to tell. I do like where we're going, we're trending, we're getting better in a lot of areas," Rivers said. "Also understand we just came off the toughest stretch that we're going to have this season, as far as seven games in 10 days, four games in five. We don't have another stretch like that this year. So, when you watch, let's say the Detroit game, you're trying to evaluate more on conditioning and fatigue, just so many other factors, instead of just watching your team play basketball."
Rajon Rondo has a streak of 34 consecutive games with double-digit assists, but there was some controversy about his most recent 10-assist game. Rivers acknowledged keeping Rondo in against the Pistons until he got his 10th assist even though the game was out of reach.
"It doesn't matter that much to me, honestly," Rivers said. "I can tell you I honestly didn't know about it until maybe a week ago, because I don't read much stuff. Then I heard the chatter before games, the reporters were asking about it, so then you know about it. I think it does matter to him, there's no doubt about that. I just don't want it to matter to him more than just playing his game. And I think for the most part he's done that.
"The other night I'm sitting there thinking we're going to lose the game with five minutes left, you could clearly see that. And that's the first time that I turned around and asked someone, 'Hey, how many assists does Rondo have?' He had eight, and I decided to leave him in and see if he can get two more."
Asked if he thought about how it might cheapen the accomplishment to have Rondo get his last two assists in garbage time, Rivers said: "Yeah, but in that case it's not like everyone stopped playing. The other team absolutely didn't stop playing. I just left him on the floor. If that had been a close game he'd have been on the floor. So, I didn't think it was that big of a deal."
Darko Milicic, signed in the offseason to provide depth in the frontcourt, reportedly has been considering returning to his native Serbia to be with his ailing mother. Milicic, a bust as the second overall pick in the 2003 draft, has appeared in just one game for the Celtics.
"It's up to him right now," Rivers said. "He has some family issues, more his mom. Not playing, and being in another country, and the NBA hasn't gone exactly great for him over his career. So, it's a lot of reasons for him to want to leave. And I understand that, and I told him that. So, I pretty much left it up to him. He has my blessing either way."
The Celtics have two 2012 draft picks playing with the D-League's Maine Red Claws, but Rivers said that if Milicic departs, it doesn't necessarily mean one of the rookies will get a call-up.
"I don't think we're in any rush to do that," Rivers said. "If we see somebody out there that we think can help us if Darko leaves, then yes. If not, patience usually helps in our league. Especially after the All-Star break, guys get released, other guys become available. I think we'll be patient."
We check in with Full Tilt, Full Time Tedy Bruschi for his take on the poor play of the New England Patriots, and where they go from here.\
The big nose tackle joins Dale and Holley the day after one of the worst losses in recent Patriots history.
Jackie Mac joins the guys to discuss her thoughts on a possible mid-season tournament in the NBA, LeBron's return to Cleveland, trade rumors with the Celtics and Red Sox, and Darrelle Revis' contract situation.
Jackie MacMullan of ESPN Boston to talk about the Lebron James Saga, the possibility of Rajon Rondo being traded, and the future of Marcus Smart.
Former coach of Celtics 1st-round pick Marcus Smart, Travis Ford joins MFB to talk about what Celtics fans should expect from the strong point guard. Among other things, Coach Ford says Smart will be a hard worker, and will improve his shooting ability.
Joe Castiglione does his annual wrap-up of the season by reading the poem by Bart Giamatti.
Mut and Rob discuss the "kids" and the variety of young bodies the Red Sox called upon this season. Specifically, they look at Bogaerts and Bradley, Jr. and where things went wrong. They give their opinions on which one will right the ship next season.
Description: Red Sox farm director Ben Crockett looks back at the 2014 Red Sox prospect season by answering listener questions about a number of Red Sox prospects as well as broader issues and themes in the farm system.
DJ Bean, WEEI.com, joined the guys to talk about the Bruins signing two young stars to 1-year contracts.
Rob Bradford is joined by WEEI.com Bruins beat writer DJ Bean, as well as Boston sports fan/blogger Turtleboy to talk all things Bruins free agency. With the B's recent moves, the conversation turns to where the Bruins might next turn and what kind of dent losing Jarome Iginla and Shawn Thornton might make.
DJ discusses Shawn Thornton's new deal, and the on going negotiations with Jerome Iginla
The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane.
The guys opened the show discussing the Pats brutal Monday night loss.
John Dennis left the show mid segment.
Christian's nephew twisted his ankle and missed Sunday's game because he (supposedly) slipped while rushing down the stairs to stop his puppy from peeing on the floor. Lou addresses the Unsportsmanlike Conduct penalty from last night's game, in which a Chiefs player was flagged for dropping to his knees during a TD celebration. And Christian is dubious of some photos of LaRon Landry.
A familiar sentiment has arisen regarding the Patriots offense. Tom Brady is locking in on 2 guys (Edelman and Gronk) and no one else seems to be getting a look. A 37 year old, future Hall of Fame QB, has little to no weapons in 2014.
Lou, Christian and Tim break down last night's embarrassing loss on national television. They wonder just how much progress has been made towards building a championship team.
A less than chipper Bill Belichick joins Dale, Michael and Steve DeOssie the day after the Patriots got blown out on Monday Night in KC.
We check in with Full Tilt, Full Time Tedy Bruschi for his take on the poor play of the New England Patriots, and where they go from here.
Mut and Chris Villani are talking about the issues the Patriots defense faced against the Kansas City Chiefs, particularly in the running game.
The Patriots seemed to have no answer for the Kansas City Chiefs. Mut and Price talk about how the Patriots were exposed in all aspects of the game.
Mut is in for Mikey and Chris Price of WEEI.com is in with him. The guys talk about the Patriots defense, inability of the offense to stay on the field, and coaching adjustments or lack thereof.
Ben and Russ break down some rumors surrounding Real Madrid and Manchester United. Also on the docket is the MLS and your New England Revolution.
Dino, Gerry and Kirk talk about Gerry's passionate defense of Tom Brady, going to lunch and clock issues in the third edition of Breaking Balls.
Red Sox farm director Ben Crockett looks back at the 2014 Red Sox prospect season by answering listener questions about a number of Red Sox prospects as well as broader issues and themes in the farm system.