Zolak & Bertrand

Celtics' Joe Mazzulla was told to stop post-whistle block attempts

'All I know is I won't be doing that anymore.'

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Joe Mazzulla seemed very proud of the unorthodox directive he issued to his coaching staff this season. But it appears the jig is up.

The Boston Celtics head coach turned heads last Thursday during a game against the Phoenix Suns when he ran onto the court during a timeout to contest Royce O'Neale's dead-ball shot attempt, a move he said was part of a deliberate strategy from the entire staff to prevent opponents from getting comfortable by taking free shots.

When asked Wednesday on 98.5 The Sports Hub's Zolak & Bertrand if he and his assistants have irked anybody with that strategy, Mazzulla admitted he received a talking-to.

"I've been told I can't do that anymore," Mazzulla said.

When asked who nixed the dead-ball block attempts and why, Mazzulla played coy.

"I can't say. All I know is I won't be doing that anymore," he added.

Check out the video player above for Mazzulla's full-back-and forth with Zolak & Bertrand about his block attempts.

O'Neale wondered aloud after Thursday's game if Mazzulla should have been given a technical for his extra-curriculars, and while there's technically no rule against players or coaches contesting dead-ball jumpers -- Kevin Garnett was notorious for blocking or goaltending opponents' shots after the whistle in Boston -- Mazzulla wryly suggested his actions drew the attention of the league.

"I don't think it's a rule, but I'm sure it will be in the next 24 to 48 hours," he said.

The philosophy behind Mazzulla's strategy, which lead Celtics assistant Sam Cassell first put into action against Buddy Hield in a Jan. 30 game against the Indiana Pacers, was mostly psychological, a small way to try to rattle opposing shooters. We'd imagine the NBA doesn't want its coaches leaping onto the court to block players' shots, though, so it was probably a matter of time before this got nixed.

Mazzulla and the NBA-leading Celtics (54-14) host the 44-24 Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday night at TD Garden, with NBC Sports Boston's coverage beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET ahead of 7:30 p.m. ET tip-off.

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