Celtics

Celtics-Hawks Game 5 set for 8:30 p.m. Tuesday

Celtics-Hawks Game 5 set for 8:30 p.m. Tuesday

With the Cleveland Cavaliers victory over the Detroit Pistons on Sunday night, now the Celtics know when they will tip off against the Hawks again.

Game 5 between the Celtics and Hawks will take place at 8:30 p.m. at the Phillips Arena in Atlanta.

Coverage will start on CSN with Pregame Live at 7:30 p.m.

Robert Williams III (lower back contusion) out for rest of Celtics game vs. Hornets

Robert Williams III (lower back contusion) out for rest of Celtics game vs. Hornets

Boston Celtics center Robert Williams III has been ruled out for the remainder of tonight's game against Charlotte after a hard spill in the second quarter. 

According to team officials, Williams suffered a lower back contusion. 

It is unclear how long Williams will be out of action with the injury. 

He joins a growing list of Celtics centers with less-than-ideal health at the moment. 

Aron Baynes remains out with a foot injury, and the Celtics opted to rest Al Horford who is suffering from some soreness in his knee. 

With the team's injury-riddled frontcourt, Williams III was making his first NBA start tonight and finished with two points, three rebounds and two blocked shots. 

The injury occurred with 1:37 to play in the second quarter and Boston trailing 60-59 when Williams III landed hard on his lower back after attempting a put-back dunk. He would lay motionless on his floor for several seconds before a time-out was called and he eventually went to the locker room for further examination. 

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Brad Stevens: 'We are in evaluation stage on who's reliable'

Brad Stevens: 'We are in evaluation stage on who's reliable'

There’s more on the line in these final days of the regular season for the Boston Celtics than simply winning games and going into the postseason with momentum. 

Celtics coach Brad Stevens had a straight-no-chaser conversation with his players earlier today with a very simple message. 

“We are in evaluation stage on who’s reliable,” Stevens told NBC Sports Boston’s Brian Scalabrine. “Like when we get to that moment when we have to know if everyone is going to be on one page doing the exact same thing, who is reliable? Ultimately that’s the end of the story."

Stevens added, “If you don’t have that reliability; If you don’t have that toughness. If you don’t have the ability to move on to what’s next you don’t last very long.”

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Having that quality has been a challenge for the Celtics all season, a big reason why Boston came into tonight’s game against Charlotte fifth in the Eastern Conference despite being seen by most as the team to beat in the East.

“We haven’t always shown that this year,” Stevens admitted.

Which is why this final stretch of games is so vital, not only to the team’s overall record but also to who Stevens will lean on when the postseason arrives in less than a month. 

“We need to win as many games as we can,” Stevens said. “And every night, whether somebody’s available or not, it’s an opportunity for someone else to step up.”

Tonight it’s rookie Robert Williams III who got his first NBA start tonight in place of Al Horford who was out to resting a sore knee.

Regardless of how tonight’s game plays out, Boston has to show the ability to accept the results and move on to the next game in a relatively seamless manner. 

Stevens knows this has been an issue with the Celtics all season. 

“So we need to prove it over the next 10 games so we know it going into the playoffs,” Stevens said. 

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