Posted April 17, 2013 on
AP on Fox
With Neil Diamond's ''Sweet Caroline'' playing over the loudspeakers and scores of Toronto Raptors fans showing their support, the Boston Celtics returned to the court for their first game since the bombing attack at the Boston Marathon.
The Celtics gathered with the Raptors at midcourt to observe a moment of silence in honor of the victims prior to Wednesday night's regular-season finale.
Diamond's classic hit, long associated with Boston's beloved Red Sox, played as the Celtics' starters were introduced, and a message on the stadium scoreboards read, ''Tonight we are all Boston fans.'' In the stands opposite the Toronto bench, three female fans held up a sign that read, ''Send Boston Love.''
The Celtics wore a black stripe on their jerseys as they played for the first time since twin blasts near the marathon's finish line on Monday left three people dead and more than 170 injured.
Celtics coach Doc Rivers said the tragedy has touched people everywhere.
''I don't think you have to be a basketball player or anything,'' Rivers said. ''You don't have to be from Boston, or from the United States. When something like that happens it has an effect on everyone because it threatens our safety and our freedom to gather as a group, and that's part of what makes us human. Every time something like that happens, it threatens that. That's the sad part of it.''
Rivers lives in downtown Boston, not far from where the bombs were detonated, and was on his way home when the attacks happened.
''I witnessed panic, which you don't ever want to see,'' Rivers said. ''And then I witnessed some great things, too. I witnessed a lot of people taking charge of their city and I thought that was awesome.''
Boston's home game Tuesday against the Indiana Pacers was canceled following the bombings, meaning the next time the Celtics play at home will be in their first round playoff series against the New York Knicks.
''Being basketball players and representing Boston, we definitely want to go out there and give the people something to cheer about,'' guard Courtney Lee said. ''Even though you can't replace losses and you can't replace injuries and whatnot, we definitely want to give those people something to take their mind off it.''
Rivers said he's been touched by the way other cities have shown their unity with Boston. Baseball fans at Yankee Stadium sang ''Sweet Caroline'' during Tuesday's game, while the Chicago Tribune featured the logos of Boston's main sports teams.
''That was beautiful, that was awesome,'' Rivers said of the Tribune's image. ''On 9-11 it was similar, you saw the Yankees-Red Sox hats. Don't get me wrong, we still hate each other in sports but not in life. You can separate the two things. I think all the big cities do a great job of showing that - that we're with you, and we're against you. It's a neat little thing.''
Even the Raptors' media relations staff found a way to pay their respects to Boston. The cards marking seating assignments on press row Wednesday bore an image of two soldiers standing over floral tributes to the tragedy, with `(hashtag)Boston' printed at the bottom.
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I don't think that Doc Rivers is afraid of anything, especially the Knicks
During his successful playing and coaching careers in the NBA, Doc Rivers has heard plenty of criticism, something to be expected as the head coach of a high-profile team like the Celtics for almost 10 years and as a player for the Knicks (from 1992-94) in the biggest city in the United...
Boston Celtics head coach Doc Rivers had just left the Prudential Center tunnel on Monday when 2 bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Rivers lives only a few blocks from where the tragedy took place, and discussed the event earlier according to a report from Celtic’s Hub, an ESPN affiliate. Rivers was on his way to watch the end of the race, like many Bostonian’s...
Celtics coach Doc Rivers was en route to the Boston Marathon finish line when the bombs exploded Monday, The Boston Globe reported.
"I always go down after practice and watch -- I've done it every year that we've been in town, because I live literally two blocks from the finish line," Rivers told the Globe on Tuesday. "I was on my way, actually -- I had just...
We relayed a lot of these quotes earlier, but for those who missed it here are the videos.
Via Chris Forsberg
ESPN Boston KG gives C's a chance - Doc Rivers believes that the Celtics can win only if Kevin Garnett plays with the team. Rivers talks Marathon tragedy, Knicks - Doc Rivers discusses the tragic events at this year's Boston Marathon and his team's chances in the playoffs. Boston Herald Doc Rivers hopes Celtics select aggression - Doc Rivers wants his team to be...
In his weekly appearance on WEEI, Doc Rivers spoke about the Celtics defensive approach to Carmelo Anthony, aka The 2013 NBA Scoring Champion, and momentum:
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Many people around Boston have raised their voices since the tragedy at the Boston Marathon shook the city Monday afternoon. But perhaps no one has phrased it quite as well as Celtics coach Doc Rivers.
Rivers lives close to the finish line, and he was among the Boston residents fielding worried texts and calls from his family Monday afternoon, he told reporters at practice Tuesday...
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If it's worth anything: Kevin Garnett is standing as still as a statue in the middle of the practice floor, staring up at the banners.
— Greg Payne (@GregPayne_ESPN) April 16, 2013
The Celtics official twitter account relayed some comments from Celtics president Rich Gotham on the cancellation of tonight's game. In light of the events of yesterday, I think everyone can...
Boston Globe Celtics shaken by Monday's horror at Boston Marathon - Baxter Holmes has the story. Boston Herald Doc Rivers sees, feels the spirit of Boston - Steve Bulpett shares the head coach's perspective. Celtics players deal with tragic reality - Mark Murphy reports on the reactions of various players. WEEI Celtics announce refund policy for Tuesday's canceled game...
Boston Celtics head coach Doc Rivers said he had just gotten out of the Prudential Tunnel and was on his way to the Boston Marathon finish line when the two bombs exploded, killing three and injuring hundreds of people on Monday. Rivers lives just a few blocks away from the end of the marathon.
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