Celtics

Al Horford injury: Danny Ainge has positive update on Celtics forward

Al Horford injury: Danny Ainge has positive update on Celtics forward

Al Horford may miss some time, but the Boston Celtics don't appear concerned about it.

Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge insisted Horford will be "fine" despite a left knee injury that has caused him to miss the last three games.

"He has tendinitis in his knee," Ainge said Thursday on 98.5 The Sports Hub's "Toucher & Rich. "... We're giving him the extra rest so that it's not a lingering effect. He could play now if he needed to, but we're just trying to give him the rest to get back to being 100 percent."

The C's can afford to take things slow with Horford, as Aron Baynes, Daniel Theis and rookie Robert Williams have helped fill the frontcourt void in his absence.

"We're just trying to give Al the time because we do have depth, especially at the center position," Ainge added. "So, he's taking a little bit of extra time."

Ainge didn't provide an exact timetable for Horford's return, but the veteran forward has already been ruled out of Friday night's game against the Hawks.

Gordon Hayward and Jaylen Brown also missed Wednesday's thrilling overtime win over the Washington Wizards due to illnesses, but Ainge said Hayward was "feeling better" Thursday morning and hopes both players can return to action this weekend.

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Celtics rally in the second half to clip the Hawks for third straight win

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USA TODAY Sports photo

Celtics rally in the second half to clip the Hawks for third straight win

It wasn’t pretty but the Boston Celtics came to Atlanta and will leave with the only thing that matters - a victory - following a 113-105 win over the Hawks which snapped an 0-for-January record on the road.

The Celtics (28-18) have now won three in a row after dropping their previous three games - all on the road.

Boston spent a good chunk of the game playing from behind which has been a common occurrence for them on the road.

Adding to their adversity was the loss of Marcus Smart in the third quarter after being whistled for a second technical foul which is an automatic ejection.

But the loss of Smart seemed to light a spark in his teammates who rallied from a double-digit deficit for the win.

Here are the Stars, Studs and Duds in Boston’s victory over the Hawks.

STARS

Kyrie Irving: For large chunks of the first half, Kyrie Irving carried the Celtics offensively which is when he scored 23 of his game-high 32 points.

Kevin Huerter: We know about his shot-making, but Huerter has play-making skills as well. In addition to scoring a team-high 19 points, he also dished out seven assists with three steals.

STUDS

Jayson Tatum: Good bounce-back for Jayson Tatum after a career-worst game last night against Memphis, tallying 19 points to go with five rebounds.

John Collins: One of the best young bigs in the NBA, Collins tallied a double-double of 15 points and 11 rebounds along with three assists.

Jaylen Brown: Without Gordon Hayward (personal reasons), Brown came up big all game long before finishing with 14 points off the bench.

Trae Young: It was another solid night for the rookie, scoring 16 points to go with seven assists.  

Terry Rozier: He didn’t shoot the ball well but there was no denying his impact on the game especially after Marcus Smart was ejected in the third quarter. Rozier finished with a near double-double of nine points and 11 rebounds to go with four assists and three steals.

Al Horford: He missed a bunny (easy basket) that he makes ninety-nine out of 100 times, but that doesn’t take away from what was another solid game by Horford. He tallied a near double-double of 13 points to go with nine rebounds.

DUDS

Marcus Smart: He has been one of the main keys to Boston’s turnaround from a 10-10 start to the season, and the Celtics are fortunate to have come away with a win on a night when Smart got tossed in the third quarter. More details will come about in the coming days will emerge, but Smart has to be - no pun intended - smarter when it comes to this type of stuff. Now to his credit, he has done a great job at keeping his emotions in check most of this season. He’ll have to get back to that mindset right away, although he might miss a game depending on how the league views the incident with Atlanta’s DeAndre’ Bembry that led to his ejection.

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Here's what happened in the Celtics' 113-105 win over the Hawks

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USA TODAY Sports photo

Here's what happened in the Celtics' 113-105 win over the Hawks

FINAL SCORE: Celtics 113, Hawks 105

IN BRIEF: For the first time in the new year, the Celtics were victorious on the road as they defeated the Hawks on Saturday night. Kyrie Irving dropped 32 points in the win. BOX SCORE.

CELTICS RECORD: 28-18

HIGHLIGHTS:

TATUM STARTS STRONG

GREAT D FROM ROZIER

KYRIE AND-ONE

THEIS BEATS THE SHOT CLOCK

KYRIE FROM LONG RANGE

SMART AND BEMBRY GET INTO IT

MORE KYRIE MAGIC

ROZIER ON THE FAST BREAK

HORFORD TIP-IN

UP NEXT:
vs Heat, Monday, 6:00 p.m., NBC Sports Boston
vs Cavaliers, Wednesday, 7:30 p.m, NBC Sports Boston

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.