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Doc Rivers looks back at 2008 Celtics championship, 2010 Finals

John Hand
July 12, 2017 - 12:24 pm

Next year will mark the 10-year anniversary of the Celtics winning banner 17.

In an interview with The Undefeated, Doc Rivers discussed the 2008 championship.

“Just the whole run,” said Rivers. “Building it from scratch with [Celtics president and general manager] Danny [Ainge]. That experience alone … When I took the job and we were going to rebuild and then we won the division. After that, we did it anyway, which took a lot of guts. We had some things go down our way.

"Kevin [Garnett] turning us down [for a trade] allowed us to get Ray [Allen]. That allowed us to get Kevin. So, things had to go our way. The thing I liked most about that team was, well, Kevin, Paul [Pierce] and Ray Allen were phenomenal, but if you look at that team, they had a bunch of instigator tough guys. Tony Allen, Leon Powe to [Big] Baby [Glen Davis] to Perk [Kendrick Perkins], James Posey. That team was built to win.

"The only mistake was after that year we allowed too many of them to go. We kept changing. That 2010 [NBA Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers] is something that we will think about forever. Perk going down in Game 6. Losing Game 7 was tough for us.”

Rivers went on to discuss how difficult it was to lose in Game 7 of the 2010 Finals.

“Yes. Forever,” Rivers said when asked if that was the toughest loss of his career.  “When you’re that close to winning something where no one gives you a chance … No one gave us a chance to be in the Finals that year. We came from the fourth seed. People thought we were down. We were too old. We kind of knew what we were doing. We paced them perfect. In 2008, everyone thought it would take us a year to get it together. We won right away, which tells you how hard it is.

"In 2010, everyone thought we were over the hill. What bothers me the most is 2009. When you look at that season, Kevin got hurt when we were on a record clip. We were playing the best basketball. When he got hurt, we never came back that season. Kevin was never the same after that. I always look back like he can’t, but what if Kevin never gets hurt? Do we win two [titles]? Do we win three?

"That’s something that you can’t get back. That group was the best group. We still talk. All of us talk. It was a good group.”

Several months ago former Celtics Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Kendrick Perkins, Glen Davis and Rajon Rondo discussed how their relationship with Ray Allen is still fractured after Allen left to go to the Heat on KG’s Area 21.

Rivers also weighed in on this issue.

“The Ray thing? I don’t know. I think it will [heal],” said Rivers. “At the end of the day, that team was as close of a group of any I have ever been around. So, when one leaves, it hurts your feelings. I think that’s what happened with our guys. Ray’s a terrific guy. We all know that. The guys that are with him are terrific. It will get back.”

Rivers also added he has tried to heal the relationship.

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