Darko Milicic has bounced around quite a bit in the NBA, with each team taking on his talents perhaps hopelessly believing it has what it takes to turn this seven-footer into a legitimate NBA center.
As much documented, the talent is probably there, though we will never know until some sort of maximum potential is reached. Doc and the Celtics have taken a different approach to working with Darko since he has spent enough time in the NBA for his personal ego to take a gigantic hit. The C’s hope to repair that ego by making Darko into a super teammate (ESPNboston):
“I tell him every day, ‘You’re no longer Darko. You’re a Celtic,’ Boston coach Doc Rivers said. “And one day, we asked him what his name was and he said, ‘Celtic.’ And everyone just started laughing. All I’m trying to do is get him to forget about trying to be something he isn’t — and just be someone for the team.”
Rivers added, “He’s got a lot of stuff on his shoulders and we’re trying to unload all of that. You go in front of Carmelo and all you’re going to do is hear that. That can get old. We’re trying to get him to move out of that.”
“I’m excited to learn from him, but I’m excited to learn from everybody else, too,” Milicic said of Garnett. “That’s what Boston is all about. It’s not about one guy. It’s about everybody. Whatever my job is going to be — if I have to get into the game and kill somebody, I kill him.”
He is talking the Boston Celtics talk, but will he walk the Boston Celtics walk? Even if it is lip service, it is nice to hear the same message of ‘team first’ from every player. Doc seems to have this team’s head on straight; lets hope it stays that way as the season progresses.