NBA

Doc Rivers taking Darko Milicic’s “likely” exit in strides

11/20/12 in NBA   |   IvanRogers   |   1352 respect

Darko Milicic’s been considering a return to Europe for a while now to take care of some family matters and Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers believed on Tuesday that the reserve center could be “likely” parting ways with the team for the remainder of the season.

"Most likely, yeah," Doc Rivers stated on whether Darko Milicic could be playing his final days in the NBA with the Boston Celtics. "Honestly the stuff with his family has been going on for a while. We've talked about it three or four times.”

 “It's probably 50-50, but once you get the one side working, it's always going to win out,” Doc Rivers made reference to Darko Milicic’s sick mother who needs attention. “It doesn't look like (he'll come back).”

Doc Rivers confirmed that the Boston Celtics were aware of Darko Milicic’s family issues for a while now, but they never considered that they would eventually force him to leave the team.

"No, no. We were hoping not,” Doc Rivers said about the possibility of the Boston Celtics previously forming premature predictions of Darko Milicic’s exit. "But his mom gets sick, he's not playing, the whole sickness, it happens… You could see a change when he found out his mom wasn't doing well. There's no doubt about that.”

“I didn't fight it much. I told him he's got to do what he thinks is right, and I'm going to support him one way or the other,” continued Doc Rivers. “But it's been going on for a little bit now.

The former 2nd overall pick Darko Milicic hasn’t played for the Boston Celtics since the 2nd November home opener against the Milwaukee Bucks. Neither did Darko Milicic undertake the trip with the team to Detroit for Sunday’s 103-83 loss. Additionally, Darko Milicic’s only logged a combined five minutes so far in the season.

"It's up to him right now," Doc Rivers said in an earlier interview Tuesday about the possibility of Darko Milicic leaving for good. "He has some family issues, more his mom. Not playing, and being in another country, and the NBA hasn't gone exactly great for him over his career.”

“So, it's a lot of reasons for him to want to leave. And I understand that, and I told him that,” added Doc Rivers. “So, I pretty much left it up to him. He has my blessing either way."

The Boston Celtics have been rumored to being interested in All-Star forward Kenyon Martins, but Doc Rivers indicated that the team will take its time filling Darko Milicic’s vacated roster spot.

"No rush at all," said Doc Rivers. "We're going to look around, but I can tell you we're in no rush."

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