Paul Pierce thinks Sunday's collapse against the Cavaliers could have been avoided.
The Celtics built an 11-point lead late in the fourth quarter and looked to be in line for a comfortable win. With the game seemingly in hand, Doc Rivers left the bench in the game longer than usual and saw the lead shrink to eight points. With the Celtics leading 87-79 with 3:42 remaining, Rivers deployed Pierce, Avery Bradley, and Kevin Garnett to close out the game. After the one-point loss to Cleveland, Pierce suggested that maybe Rivers should have brought him in earlier.
Pierce was asked if Rivers waited too long to bring him back into the game.
"I wish I was a fortune teller," Pierce told the Boston Herald. "I don't think this would have been the outcome, though."
When asked if he was disappointed by Rivers' decision, Pierce said, "No comment. Maybe I should play a little more."
Garnett was quick to stand by the decisions of his coach. "I trust Doc in any decision he makes. As players, it's our job to finish the game off."
Pierce later joined Garnett and backed off his original comments.
"It's not [Rivers'] job to explain that," Pierce said. "The coaches make their decisions. But at the time we had a pretty good lead, so I could understand it."