"I think you need that as a coach, to really echo confidence in the guys playing on that second unit".
"We talk about being calm, and being poised", said IN coach Nate McMillan, who had already seen his team blow last-minute lead to Boston when the teams met IN December.
The Celtics host the Wizards Wednesday night before heading on a two-game roadtrip to face Orlando and New Orleans.
"I'm not concerned. Where we are in the season, I'm pretty comfortable", Irving said.
"I was about to turn to run and I just saw my man on the floor and heard the whistle blow".
Kyrie Irving says his left knee is "aching" and that he will take the necessary time for the joint to feel better. He sat out the team's win over the Chicago Bulls two days later before making his return in Thursday's win over the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Irving's knee isn't the only injury the Celtics are dealing with at the moment.
The Celtics Celtics coach Brad Stevens found himself against IN even before Kyrie Irvingfinally broke inside Indy's floating nine-point cushion with a quick 7-0 burst that started on a Tatum 15-footer, carried through a Theis three-point play off a Rozier feed, and was capped with two Tatum free throws. We don't know what it is above general knee soreness, and he doesn't seem overly concerned, big-picture, with it. "But it's obviously been giving him fits here and there for the 5-8 days or so".
The Celtics are confident that Irving's knee soreness is merely tendinitis and that he likely won't miss significant time, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports. "And he carries a heavy burden, the offensive load that he carries, so we're OK with him missing some games". But we will go and get as much testing as we need to. Against the Golden State Warriors in the championship round, he played 43 minutes in Game 1 before leaving with a fractured kneecap. So I think taking games like this, being smart about it probably will put me in a better position not to be out for a long period of time.
Considering Boston (46-20) has won six of its last seven games, clinched a playoff berth quicker than any Stevens-coached team, you can understand why he wants to keep his roster and rotations as status quo as possible.