Celtics

Rondo suffers back injury, questionable vs. Magic

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Rondo suffers back injury, questionable vs. Magic

NEW YORK You will be hard-pressed to find a Boston Celtics game this season in which Rajon Rondo doesn't take a spill or two to the floor.

But in Tuesday's 118-110 loss at New York, he took one in the second half that seemed harder than usual that left him on the floor for several minutes.

'Get up,' was C's coach Doc Rivers' first thought when he saw Rondo go down.

"I saw how he hit. I didn't think he was hurt as far as career-something," Rivers said. "I just knew he would have a deep bruise. We've all fallen, and it was a hard fall."

Rivers didn't want to play Rondo any more after incident, but Rondo and C's trainer Ed Lacerte convinced Rivers that Rondo was fit to continue playing.

"Listen, I'm looking at the playoffs," Rivers said. "This game I'd rather have Rondo healthy."

Paul Pierce didn't see how Rondo fell - he seemed to have lost his balance after what appeared to be a collision with Knicks center Tyson Chandler.

"I don't think that knocked me off balance," Rondo said. "I don't even remember the play, I just remember falling. It took me a while to get up, I could feel my legs ... that's what they were telling me, if I could feel anything that I could feel my legs. It took me a lot of bending, but I could feel everything in my body."

The C's had just called a time-out and Pierce looked over and saw Rondo still on the ground, but he said he wasn't too concerned at the time.

"He has a history of laying down for long periods of time and then getting up," said Pierce, grinning. "So I knew he'd probably bounce up."

Rondo eventually rose to his feet and continued to play.

In addition to the back injury, Rondo also re-aggravated the right wrist injury that sidelined him for eight games earlier this season.

Rondo said he expects to play against Orlando Wednesday night, but that is far from a given.

"We're just trying to get one more win, I think," Rondo said. "We want to win out, but we need one more win to clinch the division."

Winning the division would be nice, but finding ways to get core guys rest between now and the playoffs is also important.

However, Rivers hasn't had to think too much about that because a number of his players keep going down with injuries that are forcing them to the sidelines to recover from those injuries and get some rest.

The Celtics were without Ray Allen (ankle) and Mickael Pietrus (right knee) on Tuesday, and their availability for Wednesday's game against the Magic is uncertain. In addition to those two and Rondo, the C's must also be concerned about Pierce's health.

He came into the game with a left toe injury which he said following Tuesday's loss, was still sore.

"But I'm more worried about the thigh," he said. "I took a hard knee to the thigh from Tyson (Chandler) in the second half. We'll see how it feels tomorrow."

Agent says Gordon Hayward is unlikely to return this season

Agent says Gordon Hayward is unlikely to return this season

Gordon Hayward had surgery on his left ankle Wednesday night.

While there was hope he could return, Hayward's agent told Adrian Wojnarowski that the Celtics forward is unlikely to play for the remainder of the season.

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Hayward suffered a dislocated ankle and fractured tibia in the first quarter of Boston’s 102-99 loss at Cleveland on Tuesday.

The 6-foot-8 All-Star landed awkwardly on his ankle after a lob pass by Kyrie Irving was deflected by LeBron James.

“We’re expecting this to be a full recovery,” Celtics head coach Brad Stevens said Wednesday, “No timeline on it but a full recovery.”

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE

BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Celtics drop back-to-back games

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BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Celtics drop back-to-back games

0:41 - Michael Holley, Tom Giles, and Kayce Smith give their thoughts on Kyrie Irving’s struggles, not having Gordon Hayward, and the Celtics losing for the 2nd time in as many nights.

6:31 - A. Sherrod Blakely joins BST to discuss the message delivered by Hayward to the fans before the game, what was going on with Kyrie’s shot, and why they failed in stopping The Greek Freak.

10:33 - Albert Breer joins BST to preview the Falcons/Patriots Sunday night game and if Atlanta is in the middle of a Super Bowl hangover.

15:40 - In a new game called On The Clock, each person gets 40 seconds to rant on their selected subject including if Red Sox fans can root for the Yankees if the playoffs and how painful the Bruins season will be. 

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE