Doc Rivers has always been known for his tremendous motivational abilities. Before the 2007 season, Rivers invited Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen on a private Duck Boat Tour on Boston to show them the route they would take through the streets as champions nearly a year later. When they departed for the preseason in Europe, Rivers stressed the African phrase “Ubuntu,” a term for unity that would eventually become the team’s motto. And according to Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald, Rivers found a much simpler way to keep his team motivated to play through the late stages of the season: a cash refund.
Back on Feb. 18, after beating the Lakers by a point at the Staples Center, Doc Rivers asked everyone in the Celtics party – players, coaches, trainers, administrators – to each give him $100.
The Celtics coach promptly stuffed the money in an envelope.
“If we want to get this money back, we’ll have to come back here in June,” said Rivers, ever the master of creating a motivational moment.
Rivers then hid the envelope, which contained approximately $2,500, in an undisclosed nook in the arena’s shoebox-like visitors locker room.
Most probably forgot about that moment when they filed back into the locker room prior to yesterday’s practice, their final lengthy tuneup before tonight’s NBA Finals opener against the Lakers.
Rivers reached into that old nook and, surprise of surprises, pulled out the envelope, still stuffed with the $2,500 in cash.
If all goes according to plan, each Celtic will receive much more than just $100 when the series is over. With his team shooting for their second championship in three years, Rivers has his work cut out for him if his latest motivational tactic will prove successful.
What do you think?
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