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Rebuilding Celtics emphasize patience now that Pierce, Garnett, Rivers have left

  • 92d2c6f97c87c823400f6a706700143e.jpg

    Minnesota Timberwolves' Kevin Martin, left, drives to the net as Boston Celtics' Courtney Lee defends during the third quarter of an NBA preseason basketball game in Montreal, Sunday, Oct. 20, 2013. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Graham Hughes) (The Associated Press)

  • 007e535a7c7ac823400f6a7067006159.jpg

    Minnesota Timberwolves' Kevin Martin, left, drives to the net as Boston Celtics' Avery Bradley defends during the third quarter of an NBA preseason basketball game in Montreal, Sunday, Oct. 20, 2013. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Graham Hughes) (The Associated Press)

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    Boston Celtics' Jeff Green, center, takes a shot as Minnesota Timberwolves' Ronny Turiaf, left, and Dante Cunningham defend during the first quarter of an NBA preseason basketball game in Montreal, Sunday, Oct. 20, 2013. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Graham Hughes) (The Associated Press)

  • 1bde7bf66288c723400f6a70670092db.jpg

    Boston Celtics' Jared Sullinger, right, makes a pass as Minnesota Timberwolves' Ricky Rubio defends during first quarter of an NBA preseason basketball game in Montreal, Sunday, Oct. 20, 2013. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Graham Hughes) (The Associated Press)

When the Boston Celtics parted with Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett in a blockbuster trade, they were left with a huge rebuilding job focused on three areas.

Those are offense, defense and patience.

Throw in the departure of coach Doc Rivers and the arrival of NBA neophyte Brad Stevens as his replacement and the 17-time NBA champions face a bleak future.

Pierce and Garnett are with the Brooklyn Nets. Rivers is coaching the Los Angeles Clippers. And patience is the priority, especially with star point guard Rajon Rondo still recovering from knee surgery.

Forward Jeff Green says patience is probably one of the top words in the team's vocabulary. He is one of seven holdovers from last season's team that lost in the first round of the playoffs.