Celtics

Celtics

WALTHAM, Mass. – For most of his playing career, Kelly Olynyk hasn’t had to give much thought to what he would be doing on opening night of the season.

Playing in the game, of course.

But this season is different, courtesy of a tussle for a rebound against Kevin Love in Game 4 of the playoffs last season against Cleveland.

The play ended in Love suffering a left shoulder injury and missing the rest of the postseason, while Olynyk was given a one-game suspension for his role in the incident which will be served Wednesday night in Boston’s season opener against Philadelphia.

And so on the eve of the Celtics’ first game of the season, Olynyk prepares just like every other Celtic knowing his time to shine won’t come about on Wednesday.

“It’s never fun having to sit out,” Olynyk told CSNNE.com. “You always want to be out there to help your team.”

He can’t even do it in the form of a 7-foot cheerleader, either.

League rules prevent players who are suspended from being in the arena during the game.

When I asked Olynyk what his plan was for watching the game, it was clear after a brief pause that he had no definitive agenda for viewing the game.

“I haven’t thought about it; I really haven’t. I don’t know. I guess I have to get that on the agenda,” quipped Olynyk.

To not be able to play in the opener is disappointing when you consider Olynyk had a relatively solid training camp in which he earned a spot in the team’s big man rotation.

With David Lee and Tyler Zeller starting, the Celtics’ big man rotation consists of Amir Johnson and Olynyk.

Filling the void as the team’s fourth big will be Jonas Jerebko or Jared Sullinger.

Having to miss games is not something that’s new to Olynyk who has been sidelined at times with minor injuries.

But those times prepared him for moments like this when he has to be a spectator rather than attempt to be a spectacular player.

Olynyk said his approach to watching games when he’s unable to play is pretty basic.

“Just try to look out there and see what works, see what doesn’t,” Olynyk said. “When I redshirted (at Gonzaga as a junior), I tried to view the game from the coaches perspective, see what they see and want; just look at the game more intellectually since you can’t play.”