UPDATE: Kevin Garnett is headed back to Boston for an MRI according to an ESPN report. No word on when the results of the exam will be released.
Judging this from an outside perspective I see Garnett heading back to Boston as a potential early indicator that the Celtics will be playing it extremely cautious with The Big Ticket. I think we can count on KG being out for the Phoenix game Sunday and perhaps the other remaining two games on the Celtics Western road trip pending the results of the exam.
Upon discussing the injury with fellow Celticshub.com contributor Zach Lowe he made a great point about KG’s involvement in the All-Star game as news filtered out that the knee injury had been lingering:
“Red’s Army asks a great question: Should the Celtics have held Garnett out of the All-Star game if his knee has been bothering him for a “couple of weeks,” as Ainge said last night? I perked up during the All-Star game when one commentator mentioned that KG had told Mike Brown he had “five or six hard minutes in him.” That worried me immediately. I mean, Manny Ramirez used to skip the All-Star game, claiming bogus hamstring injuries. He just preferred the rest. Everyone got mad about it for a few hours and then let it go. KG’s earned the kind of respect where he can duck the NBA’s mid-season party without facing any skepticism from Stern or the fans. He should have done it, or the team should have forced him to.”
This is a terrific examination of the situation by Zach Lowe. KG’s passion and intensity without a doubt could have inhibited him from asking for the time off he needed at the break for a nagging knee injury.
All things considered as long as the injury is not overly serious, the span of time Garnett is out could end up being a boon for the Celtics in the long run if it results in a healthy and rejuvenated Big Ticket come May.
As noted above, Garnett is the kind of player that would have played through this kind of lingering injury the entire rest of the season without raising a fuss about it. Thus it could be in both his and the team best interest to give the knee some much deserved rest and come back with it at 100 percent or close to it.
In the meantime, the agents for Joe Smith and Mikki Moore are surely at the top of Danny Ainge’s speed dial as without KG the Celtics are left with only four relatively foul prone healthy big men on the roster.
It will certainly be a challenging Sunday for the C’s trying to contain Amare and Shaq with three undersized power forwards and Kendrick Perkins. Doc will need to get creative or hope for some reinforcements to be able to maintain the Celtics slim lead over the Cavs for the top spot in the East if KG is out for an extended length of time.
Making sure Garnett is completely healthy will be the highest priority here for the C’s though. And if that forces them to fall them to the 2nd spot for the regular season, so be it. The Celtics are not beating the Cavs without a healthy KG in a 7 game series anyway.
“As you know, I suffered an injury, a strain to my right knee, during the game and I really don’t have any comment about it. I will have the knee re-examined (Friday) and we should have more information at that time. Obviously, I would much rather be playing instead of providing this statement.”
Quick Analysis: It appears that Celtics fans can step back from toeing the ledge after intitally seeing KG go down. It remains to be seen right now how long Garnett will remain out but after hearing this statement it most likely indicates that if KG is out for any significant length of time we are likely talking about a few weeks at the most rather than months
Celticshub will have any more news updates on Garnett’s injury as they develop as well as a full analysis of last night’s defeat in Utah in the upcoming hours.