Pierce playing with pinched nerve


Pierce playing with pinched nerve

BOSTON -- Paul Pierce has kept his discomfort under wraps.
The Boston Celtics captain said Wednesday night he has been playing this season with a pinched nerve in his neck.
Pierce has been battling through pain and stepping up while three teammates went down for the season.
"It's something that's been bothering me probably like the last two months," Pierce said after the Celtics 71-69 win over the Chicago Bulls. "It's getting better, though. The last couple of weeks, it's been better than it has been."
The Celtics are pushing forward without the injured Rajon Rondo, Jared Sullinger, and Leandro Barbosa. Since Rondo suffered an ACL injury on January 25, Pierce has posted two triple-doubles and three double-doubles, bringing his season average up to 18.5 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 4.4 assists per game.
He struggled offensively on Wednesday, though, shooting 2-for-12 from the field (2-5 3PG). He posted 8 points, 6 rebounds, and 6 assists in 34 minutes.
When asked if Pierce had 'no legs' in the game, head coach Doc Rivers replied, "I don't think anyone did, I'm serious, on both teams. We're talking about our legs -- we won and scored 71 points. I just thought it was one of those games. As we all know, the last game before All-Star is a strange game."
Pierce is looking forward to the break before the Celtics head out on a west coast road trip next week. Once the C's do return to work, he hopes there will be more players available to help spell minutes.
I think its going to be necessary just for us to even have practice, probably have to add a guard, maybe another big man," he said. "We had walkthrough today and we had (former NBA guard) Tyronn Lue, one of our assistant coaches, out there participating in it. Most likely I think its going to be necessary just to have some depth maybe give me, Kevin (Garnett), Jason (Terry) some rest, especially during practices. Hopefully maybe they can contribute in a game."When it comes to team moves, he will leave it up to those in front office positions. His focus is helping the Celtics on the court.
"I'm just going to leave it up to them, him (Doc Rivers), Danny (Ainge)," he said. "They've got to get in there, come together this weekend, come up with the best available plan and work that out. Me? I'm going to take this time to rest, not really think about it, just leave it up to them."

Bill Russell, Kobe Bryant post messages to Gordon Hayward


Bill Russell, Kobe Bryant post messages to Gordon Hayward

A couple of NBA legends - one old school and one more modern-day - were among the luminaries wishing Gordon Hayward well after his gruesome ankle injury in the Celtics' season opener in Cleveland on Tuesday night.

Celtics legend Bill Russell tweeted his best wishes to Hayward on Twitter and future Hall of Famer Kobe Bryant posted a message to him on Instagram.

Be sad. Be mad. Be frustrated. Scream. Cry. Sulk. When you wake up you will think it was just a nightmare only to realize it’s all too real. You will be angry and wish for the day back, the game back THAT play back. But reality gives nothing back and nor should you. Time to move on and focus on doing everything in your power to prepare for surgery, ask all the questions to be sure you understand fully the procedure so that you may visualize it in your subconscious while being operated on and better the chance of it’s success. Then focus on the recovery process day by day by day. It’s a long journey but if you focus on the mini milestones along the way you will find beauty in the struggle of doing simple things that prior to this injury were taken for granted. This will also mean that when you return you will have a new perspective. You will be so appreciative of being able to stand, walk, run that you will train harder than you ever have. You see the belief within you grow with each mini milestone and you will come back a better player for it. Best of luck to you on this journey my brother #mambamentality always.

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Hayward went down about five minutes into his first regular-season game with the C's and is awaiting surgery for an ankle dislocation and fracture at New England Baptist Hospital.

New Celtics teammate Kyrie Irving and the player Irving was traded for, Isaiah Thomas, also posted Wednesday in the aftermath of the injury. 

WE ALL got you brother, No matter what. @gdhayward 3/23 🔺👁☘️

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