Game 5 of that Orlando series seems like ages ago. Which makes it all the more remarkable that Kendrick Perkins hasn’t picked up a technical foul since then.
Perkins had one of his two technical fouls for that game rescinded, leaving him with six technicals for the 2010 playoffs. Rasheed Wallace picked up his sixth technical foul of the postseason Thursday night against the Lakers. One more for either player and it’s a one-game suspension.
“I think he’s going to be alright,” Perkins said of Wallace. “I think everybody on the team has to remind him that he’s got six and to stay focused, but he knows how to control himself.”
The last part of that comment got a laugh from the assembled media.
“Yeah, really,” said Perkins. “I’m pretty sure it’s not the first time he’s been in this situation. He’s been in a situation where he’s been a tech away from being suspended before, so he knows how to handle himself.”
On his own trouble with technicals, Perkins said, “Really I haven’t been thinking about it. Once the game starts, I just think that whatever’s going to happen is going to happen. I just go out there and still try to play physical but play smart.”
Physicality is possibly the biggest edge the Celtics have over the Lakers, particularly with Lakers center Andrew Bynum not 100 percent. Perkins said he has had to balance his role with the knowledge that one more technical foul will lead to a disastrous suspension.
“I’m somewhat the enforcer on the team,” said Perkins. “So sometimes I want to to go and instigate a problem or something like that, just get your team fired up. You never know what can happen. You pick and choose your battles a little bit.
Asked if he could hand over his enforcer role to someone else, Perkins said, “I don’t think anybody could do it like me.”
Doc Rivers said Perkins and Wallace should not alter the way they play because of the technical fouls.
“We’re just going to play our game,” said Rivers. “We’re not going to worried about it. If it happens, it happens. I’m hoping obviously there is no Game 7, but if it happens, let’s let it happen in Game 7, then we’re fine. There’s no other game they can get suspended. It’s really only two games they have to get through if you think about it, it’s not three. Listen, I don’t want them to be less emotional. I want them to play their games but also have some discipline. That’s about all we can do.”
Celtics captain Paul Pierce said Perkins and Wallace should do whatever they can to stay on the floor.
“Whatever works because we need both those guys,” said Pierce. “Those technicals, they can hurt you if we lose either one of those guys. Whatever Kendrick does for Sheed, whatever Sheed does for Kendrick, I hope they realize we need these guys in there for all of them, and whatever they can do, I’m all for it.”