I don’t know if Doc Rivers is the smartest coach in the NBA. I mean, he’s the only doctor amongst the 30 head guys, but I kind of think that’s just an honorary title since I can’t find any proof of him even attending medical school.
Nonetheless, I have a feeling that you will agree that Doc Rivers is the smartest coach in the game, just as soon as you read this bit of logic he used while destroying one of the NBA’s most treasured playoff clichés. From ESPN:
“I guess they say the series hasn’t started — and I’ve heard this corny line a million times — until the road team wins,” said Rivers. “I am positive the series has started because we are down 2-0.”
Isn’t that brilliant? Doc has your answer.
It’s brilliant, right? Thank you.
Doc is right about a couple of things here: 1) That is pretty brilliant; 2) I checked in to the league’s archives and found that even series that saw no road victories were counted as legitimate in the NBA’s eyes. Or to put it more clearly, an NBA postseason series starts with Game 1, it doesn’t have to wait until a road team wins. It’s not technically in the rule book, so I’m guessing it’s one of those unwritten rules of the game that even though people say “A series doesn’t start until the road team wins,” the league is still going to count the results from games where the home team wins.
Next up for Doc Rivers, however, will be convincing his team that scoring in the second half of a game counts just as much as it does in the first half of the game. I’ve never really heard a saying that says first and second half points don’t count the same, but believing that is true is the only possible explanation for why they’ve scored a combined 48 points in the 48 second half minutes they’ve played in their first round series. After settling this whole road team debacle, I’m confident Doc can talk his guys in to scoring at least 30 points in a second half. Maybe.