Doc Rivers returns to standing ovation, memories and his successor

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Doc Rivers (right) returned to Boston for the first time, meeting his Celtics successor, Brad Stevens.

Doc Rivers (right) returned to Boston for the first time, meeting his Celtics successor, Brad Stevens.

Stevens is the next generation. He made the same kind of decision last summer, at a time in his life when it made perfect sense for him to take on the type of long-term rebuilding project that Rivers took on a decade ago. During breaks in the game, Green and his Celtics teammates would say nice things to Rivers; and then the ball went back into play and they chased it hard on behalf of Stevens. It was the best of both worlds.