Doc Rivers Responds to Phil Jackson’s KG Jab

by June 02, 2010

Jackson seems to say something to try and get in the head of his opponent prior to each Playoff series; the NBA Finals are no exception. Doc Rivers, though, had fun with Phil’s poke at his star forward’s tactics. From the LA Times: “Speaking of his own defense, Jackson said, ‘We don’t have a smackdown mentality.’ Then, Jackson said, using Garnett as an example, ‘You might have seen that with  Garnett on [Orlando’s Dwight] Howard in Game 6 in Boston, where [Garnett] was smacking Howard’s arm and was finally called for an offensive foul. That’s not our kind of team. We don’t go out there and smack people around.’ Now, whether Jackson intended the slight or not, his answer is being used as bulletin-board fodder for this Finals series. On Tuesday, Garnett gave the jab a brief no comment, later adding, ‘I think nothing of it. It’s just Phil playing mind games.’ But Celtics Coach Doc Rivers appreciated it on Garnett’s behalf. ‘We just thank Phil for the compliment,’ Rivers said. ‘That’s very nice of him to say.’ Moreover, Rivers said Jackson’s usual postseason zinger is a compliment for Garnett. ‘I think he picks the best player on the other team or who he thinks is key,’ Rivers said. ‘So I think Kevin should put that one right up there with his MVP trophy and everything else. I think Kevin should be excited about that.’ Will other Celtics players be jealous? ‘I think Paul [Pierce] and Ray [Allen] and [Rajon] Rondo, they’re going to be [upset] about this because they were hoping it would be them,’ Rivers said, smiling.”