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Welcome to the Garden ...

Posted by Julian Benbow, Globe Staff  April 2, 2010 06:58 PM

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KGfine(crop).jpg


... where the NBA doesn't accept checks or money orders.

You might have heard the league snatched $25,000 from Kevin Garnett earlier today after the Celtics all-star called Kevin Durant "Michael [expletive] Jordan] in a press conference following the 109-104 loss to the Thunder.

The Celtics have racked up $135,000 in fines as a team between Garnett, Doc Rivers, Glen Davis and Rasheed Wallace.

Explaining how the league goes about collecting the money, which goes to charity, Rivers said scratching out a check isn't an option.

"They take it right out," Rivers said. "Trust me, if we had to write checks, they'd never get them."

Asked to broach the issue of whether it's fair to be fined for answering a valid question, Rivers pleaded the fifth.

"I'm not going to give an opinion," Rivers joked, "because I want to keep my money."

However, he conceded that In a perfect world, free speech would be ideal.

"I think we should be allowed to say whatever we want," Rivers continued. "I think everyone would be happier. But we can't. That's the league we're in and I'm fine with it for the most part."

As for tonight's matchup, the Celtics are trying break up a two-game losing skid with visiting Houston coming in.

The Rockets, trying to play out and injury-plagued season now that they know they're out of postseason contention, will be without Trevor Ariza, who will miss the game with a stomach ailment.

There's obviously an interesting battle at the point guard spot between Rajon Rondo and Aaron Brooks, two player who could both make a case for Most Improved. In their last meeting, the Celtics went into Toyota Center and beat the Rockets 94-87 largely by putting Aaron Brooks on a 3-point line quarantine.

He went 4 for 12 that night and missed his only 3-pointer, snapping a streak of 39 straight games with at least one trey.

Sizing up the matchup, Kendrick Perkins said, "Speed on speed."

"It's different though," he said, "because you've got one guy that'll probably look to go out and get 40, then you got another guy who'll go out and try to get 20 assists."

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