Celtics coach Doc Rivers made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Thursday morning and talked about last night's win over the Jazz and the Celtics' 8-1 start to the season.
Rivers addressed Rasheed Wallace's 3-point shooting, which became a topic of conversation after the first-year Celtic went 0-for-10 in two games over the past weekend. Rivers said he encourages Wallace and Eddie House to shoot the trey when they have the opportunity.
"With him and Eddie, I tell them every time they're open to shoot it and don't hesitate. I'll be the guy who will pull them back," Rivers said. "We want [Wallace] looking for it. We don't want him thinking about shooting. ... They're great 3-point shooters, shoot it. That's what they do."
Rivers talked about the stats the coaching staff does and does not use to analyze the team's performance.
"Field goal percentage for us is misleading, because we count open shots," he said. "We have our own stat on field goal percentage because it counts as open shots — for defense and offense.
"Rebounding, turnovers and assists — those numbers don't lie," Rivers addded. "That's a number we always look at for us. The biggest [stat] for defense beside field goals is deflections, which they don't put on the stat sheet. That's really important."
Rivers enjoyed having three days of practice leading up to last night's game, which followed a stretch of eight games in 12 days. Rivers said the team was able to shore up its pick-and-roll coverage, transition defense and offensive timing.
"When you play eight games in 12 days and you don't have time to work on things, you lose a lot [in terms of execution]," he said. "You could see [the improvement] in the game last night."
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