After the Celtics’ Game 7 loss to the Lakers in the NBA Finals, Doc Rivers wasn’t in the mood to talk.
Not even to President Barack Obama.
The morning after the crushing defeat, Rivers and the team were boarding a private jet bound for Boston. Then, his cell phone started buzzing, but Rivers ignored it, the Orlando Sentinel reports. He saw the 202 area code and figured it was Stan Kasten, current president of the Washington Nationals and former executive with the Atlanta Hawks when Rivers played there. He didn’t feel like talking.
When the plane touched down, Rivers turned on his phone, and shortly after, Kasten’s name appeared on the screen. It was finally time to listen to the mandatory condolences — but Rivers was thrown a curveball.
"Doc, hold on, I have a friend who wants to say hello," Kasten said.
The president of the Nationals then passed the cell phone to another president.
"Doc, this is President Obama,” he said. "I guess I can’t get you to pick up the phone."
The president often calls the winning team to congratulate them on becoming world champions. Phil Jackson and the Lakers received a call the night they won the title, but President Obama was so impressed with the Celtics’ run that he felt Rivers deserved a call as well.
Luckily for the president, he and Kasten were together watching Stephen Strasburg pitch, and when Obama mentioned he couldn’t get Rivers on the phone, Kasten did him a favor.
Next time Rivers sees 202 on his cell phone, you better believe he’s going to answer it.