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Doc Rivers Talks KG’s Injury & Rondo’s Return Status

The dust is still settling from last night’s debacle in Detroit. As we await more news, likely on the way later this afternoon regarding the status of Kevin Garnett’s lower right leg injury, Doc Rivers joined WEEI in Boston this morning to discuss the latest regarding his All-Star power forward:

On What He Knows On KG:

“I can’t tell you much more than what you know already,” Rivers said. “He’s going to do more tests today. We do think it’s muscle-related. We don’t think it has anything to do with the knee, but we don’t know. So we’re going to wait and see.”

Rivers added, “I think we’re in good shape here, but you just never know. I’m just going to wait for the MRI. I should know by mid-afternoon.”

On Rajon Rondo’s Potential Return:

“I don’t know if we’ll see him tomorrow or not but he’s getting close,” Rivers said. “Each time he’s worked out there’s been some swelling. That’s a concern. We’re going to take it slow. We’re not going to push him back, we’ll just wait until he’s ready to play.”

On Using The Rookies More:

“With the amount of injuries we’ve had, I don’t know if Avery [Bradley] is ready, but we’re playing him. I don’t know if Luke is ready, but we’re probably going to play him. At the end of the day, we’re probably going to play both guys. We don’t want them on the court at the same time. We’ll probably try to split up their minutes. But we’re down in numbers right now and we may have no choice.”

On Jermaine O’Neal Needing To Step Up:

“We need him,” Rivers said. “He struggled against obviously Orlando, first game back. I thought Indiana in the second half he was terrific. I thought [against Detroit] he was one of the few bright spots. He played with great energy and did his job defensively.”

Be sure to check out the full interview at weei.com.

A few words of warning in the interim however. The Celtics in the past have been, dare I say, not the most forthcoming about Garnett’s injuries. That reality is completely understandable. There’s no need to give the media, or your opposition for that matter more information than is required. Certain edges can be gained by attacking a player’s injury when he’s out there.

So while the team has been cautiously optimistic so far, (and why wouldn’t they be?) let’s be realistic about what we are dealing with here folks. It was a non-contact injury, an incredibly painful injury to Garnett. KG will miss games here as Doc said. He will also miss a lot of them.

I’m not going to speculate too much unnecessarily about the specifics of the injury without real news, but any expectation that we will see this guy in the next couple months on the floor is probably wishful thinking. Since even if it was just a “moderate” injury to the calf, tempting fate with an early return for the aging veteran would be foolish to say the least.

For now, the Celtics will get their second crack at life without KG in the interim. The first time around didn’t go so bad, as the C’s fell just one game short of the NBA Eastern Conference Finals without him. There’s new faces involved this time, and only a section of the regular season to battle through instead of the NBA Playoffs. Buckle aboard folks, because no matter what the diagnosis is, we’re going to be dealing with life without KG for what will likely be a significant while.

For Ryan DeGama’s engaging thoughts on the injury situation with KG click here.

  • Dave

    There's no need to rush K.G. back. They don't want a samilar situation to 2008-09. If he misses every game until game 1 in the playoffs that's o.k. It's not worth losing him and getting knocked out early in the playoffs. Besides he's 34, so his recovery is questionable. But if he's badly injured it's not good because the Celtics have Perkins, West, Rondo, Jermaine O'Neal, Shaquille O'Neal all injured at some point in this season. So this team was lots of injuries to overcome.

  • Stephen

    Damn Brian!!! You trying to bum us all out or what. What do you mean—2 months? If it is a strained calf injury only, then I think that's being a bit pessimistic. That is unless, we are not getting the full story here in regard to the injury.