HOUSTON — There are many times when the job of an NBA head coach stretches beyond the Xs an Os to becoming a part-time psychologist. You learn to read the emotions of your team and know when to step in.
On a day such as this one that is filled with the horror of the school shooting in Newtown, Conn., the Celtics’ Doc Rivers knows that it’s in the forefront of his players’ minds and sometimes feels the need to address real life before the games begin.
“I go back and forth on it,” Rivers said. “I don’t know what the right answer is. I know a lot of our guys are talking about it, so I probably will mention it before the game.
“It’s awful. Just an awful day, it really is. This is our jobs. This is not a game for us. It is what we do. But when something like this happens, it supersedes job and everything else and, as a parent, this is awful.
“It’s all of our community is what I’m saying. I saw a guy doing an interview there with a Celtics’ shirt on. So that does make it part of our community. That part of the area is probably 50-50 Celtics or Knicks in Connecticut. But this is a national incident. I think it hits us all home because we’re parents and it’s just sensitive.”