I'm not the least bit surprised that Celtics coach Doc Rivers announced Tuesday that he'll probably shut down Kevin Garnett until the last two or three games of the regular season to give his ailing right knee a chance to heal.
It sure sounded like Rivers was leaning that way Friday night in Atlanta, when he wouldn't rule out another lengthy absence to get KG ready for the playoffs.
Surprised is one thing. Concerned is another. I don't know how the Celtics couldn't be gravely worried about their chances of a repeat with Garnett so slow to return.
It's not as though Rivers brought Garnett back after nearly a month and rode him like Secretariat. KG didn't log more than 18 minutes in any of the four games he played before Rivers sat him as a precuation Friday night against the Hawks. When last I saw Rivers, outside the visiting locker room at Philips Arena, he professed no concern about KG's aborted comeback.
"I'm just going to make sure I don't have concern by doing it this way," Rivers said.
Hey, Doc: I think the time to be concerned has come. The champs are officially in trouble.