Doc Rivers fined $25,000 for criticizing officials

Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

Celtics head coach Doc Rivers ripped the referees for fouls called on Kevin Garnett after Boston's 85-71 loss to the Knicks in Game 2.

The Boston Celtics' Doc Rivers became the first coach to run afoul of the NBA this postseason, as the league has fined him $25,000 for the comments he made after their Game 2 loss to the New York Knicks.

Rivers, in a press conference after the game, ripped the officials for their treatment of Kevin Garnett in Game 2 (via the Boston Globe):

"Listen, I thought the fouls on Kevin, first of all they were horrendous," Rivers said. "That's just the way it goes. There's nothing I can do about it now. I thought if it could've gone either way on three of those, they all went against Kevin. I think that's tough."

With Jared Sullinger out for the season, Garnett is the only traditional big man currently in Boston's rotation. As a result, he's absolutely essential to the Celtics' game-plan at both ends of the court.

Garnett was in foul trouble for most of Game 2 and played only 24 minutes while racking up five personal fouls. If the Celtics have any chance of flipping the dynamic in the series as it returns to Boston, they'll need to keep Garnett on the floor. And if Rivers's comments make the referees more leery of calling off-ball fouls on one of his star players, he'll almost certainly consider the fine money well spent.

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