Doc Rivers can say anything he wants, spin it anyway he wants, but the New Orleans Hornets / Boston Celtics tilt on Wednesday night will be anything but an ordinary affair. How can it be when Rivers’ son will be wearing a Hornets’ uniform and doing his best to put an L on the elder Rivers’ resume?
How surreal it must be for Doc – he’s busy figuring out ways to make his son’s stay in Boston as miserable as possible, and yet he’s profoundly proud that his son has followed in his footsteps to the NBA.
What to do, what to do? Well, for starters, Doc needs to remind himself that his Celtics are currently on a serious roll; winners of six straight, Boston is playing its best basketball of the year and slowly creeping up the Eastern Conference standings. That’s where Doc’s head should – and will – be. He knows he can wish his son the very best after the game is over, and that the biggest priority between now and then is figuring out a way to beat New Orleans and push The Streak to seven.
And that would be the best of both worlds, wouldn’t it? Austin Rivers in the house, the Celtics rocking the house, and a winning streak intact – and extended – when all is said and done. That’s what everyone in Celtic Nation is rooting for, and that’s exactly what I hope ends up happening.
Austin Rivers, for his part, hopes to foil his father’s plot. He wants to put up big numbers, come away with a win – and family bragging rights – but the likelihood of that happening isn’t great. New Orleans is 12-26 on the season, and Rivers is 0.2 points, 1 assist and 1 rebound per contest of the last five games. So while Austin Rivers may be dreaming big, he shouldn’t be surprised if he and his team struggles while the Celtics continue to roll.