Bradley (hamstring) focused on getting ready for Game 2

Bradley (hamstring) focused on getting ready for Game 2

ATLANTA – As Avery Bradley began to get dressed following Boston’s 102-101 Game 1 loss to Atlanta, he could not fully extend far enough to reach down and pull his pants up.

Moments later he hobbled towards a whiteboard to address the media, a black crutch propped under his left arm to help keep as much pressure as possible off his right hamstring.

This was not the look of a player who would be on the floor within 72 hours.

As optimistic as Bradley is about most things, even he had to concede that his current injury may keep him out for the rest of the series.

“I’m taking it day by day. I don’t really know,” Bradley said. “It could be (season-ending), but I’m hoping it’s not. I’m focusing on it just being day-by day.”

Bradley said he will undergo an MRI on the hamstring Sunday morning to better determine the extent of the injury and how much, if any, time will he be out.

“I just want to try and get treatment and hopefully I can be back by next game,” Bradley said. “I’ll get treatment tonight, get treatment all night. My main focus is getting right for next game.”

But that appears doubtful, especially after the conversation Celtics head coach Brad Stevens had with Bradley after the injury.

“He’s very, very sore, “Stevens said. “And he said on the court that he heard a pop. I don’t know if that is something … he got hit or what. So we’ll see.”

I asked Bradley what happened on the play in which he suffered the hamstring injury.

“I think I tried to go up and block (Jeff) Teague,” Bradley said. “And I came down I felt weird. I took a few steps and I just couldn’t walk. But like I said, my main focus is to get treatments and get back as soon as possible.”

While his teammates would love to see him back on the floor on Tuesday for Game 2, they understand that his injury is not one to take lightly or rush back too soon from.

“Hamstring is nothing to play with,” said Jae Crowder. “He’s a fast type of guy, so he needs his hamstring as much as possible. I don’t know how serious it is.”

NBC Sports Boston Breakfast Pod: Reserve-heavy Celtics keep at it, top Trail Blazers

NBC Sports Boston Photo

NBC Sports Boston Breakfast Pod: Reserve-heavy Celtics keep at it, top Trail Blazers

1:13 - The Celtics came away with a 105-100 win in Portland on Friday night. Find out why Chris Mannix is calling this the best Celtics win of the season.

6:05 - Mannix discusses details about Kyrie Irving’s ‘minimally invasive’ procedure on his knee and what his level of concern is with A. Sherrod Blakely and Gary Tanguay.

10:03 - Michael Holley and Tom Curran discuss what NFL players, including Devin McCourty, are doing beyond the gridiron by being active in criminal justice reform discussions held at Harvard this week.



Morris getting it done for Celtics on both ends of the floor

Morris getting it done for Celtics on both ends of the floor

When you think about Marcus Morris these days, big-time scoring immediately comes to mind. 

But in Boston’s 105-100 comeback win over Portland, Morris’ contributions went beyond the game-high 30 points he dropped on the Blazers.

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“Coach (Brad Stevens) is doing a great job of getting me the ball in my spots and my teammates are finding me,” Morris told reporters after the win. “And I’m just coming through.”

He’s providing strong play and a tremendous presence at both ends of the floor which has been critical to the team navigating some choppy waters with a number of regular rotation players – namely Kyrie Irving – out with injuries.

“One thing is, he’s healthy,” said Boston’s Al Horford, referring to the sore knee that limited Morris earlier this season and at times forced him to miss games. “And the other is, he’s just more confident, he’s playing very assertive. He’s playing great right now, in a really good rhythm.”

Said Stevens: “That’s been him (Morris). As he’s continued to feel better; I think physically he’s felt as good as he’s felt. He’s comfortable in our system and we need him to score. If you’re a basketball player and your job is to score, that’s a pretty good job.”

And it’s one that even with all the injuries Boston has played through, few envisioned him being such an integral part of the offense. 

Morris’ calling card prior to arriving in Boston was his defense. 

But Morris has made it known that his focus on the floor is to be as complete a player as possible.

“I’m not trying to just limit myself to just being that scorer,” Morris said. “Also, on the defensive end I think I’m bringing it; my defense has gotten a lot better, especially my on-the-ball defense. I’m trying to be that all-around player and not just an offensive player … but I can score.”