BOSTON — Although he never raised his voice, Doc Rivers criticized the refs (Bennett Salvatore, Marc Davis and Derek Richardson) after yesterday's frustrating 90-89 loss to the Lakers.
Paul Pierce would have given the C's a 3-point lead with 27.5 seconds remaining but his jumper was waived off. He was called for pushing off on Ron Artest.
Rivers said, "At that point, it's got to be unbelievable, but I didn't see it so I can't really give an opinion on it. I do know Kobe (Bryant) pushes off a lot."
Pierce said, "I thought I made a good move. ... I guess the ref saw it differently.''
The Pierce push-off wasn't the only call Rivers disputed.
He didn't like a late Ray Allen foul.
"I didn't think Ray fouled Kobe on the strip play,'' he said. "I thought that was as clean as you're going to get. ... I didn't think the guy was in position to make the call.''
The C's led by 11 early in the fourth but again found a way to lose. In the final nine minutes, the Green had two baskets and five turnovers, hardly a recipe for success.
"With five minutes left, we went into the stall mode offensively,'' Rivers explained.
"We walked the ball up the floor, took forever to run stuff. That's just not who we are.''
Kobe Bryant is listed as 6-6, 205 and Ray Allen as 6-5, 205. But Bryant has to outweigh him by a good 25 pounds.
Boston is at Washington today (7 p.m.) and hosts Miami Wednesday (8 p.m.).
Boston has lost three straight for the third time this season (Jan. 28-31, Jan. 14-20, Dec. 27-30) a troubling stat considering some experts said this could be a 72-win team. That sounds silly now as the C's dipped to 29-16. Their last four-game losing streak was Jan. 4-9 last year.