Celtics big man Aron Baynes will sit out Saturday’s game against the Detroit Pistons due to a right hamstring strain, coach Brad Stevens told reporters at the team’s morning shootaround.
Baynes will miss his third consecutive game as the team treads cautiously with the injury he sustained last Saturday in New York. Baynes accompanied the team on its current two-game road trip but Stevens said the team does not want to rush him back, particularly with two days off before playing again on Tuesday.
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"I’ve been told that Baynes is unavailable tonight and I think that’s being conservative, especially with two days coming, so he can hopefully practice Monday then be ready to go Tuesday,” Stevens said. "I think that’s a good move. We’ll play without him tonight and that will be a great challenge. Especially with how good [Detroit’s] two bigs are playing.”
Baynes was playfully dodgy about his health when talking to reporters, saying he’s “100 percent of what I can be.” He not-so-subtly hinted he’s eager to play but that the team is not taking chances.
"It’s one of those things, it’s still early in the year,” said Baynes. "If it was playoff time, there’s no doubt [I’d play]. Trying to be smart, I guess. Very frustrating but trying to be smart. It’s not something I like to do. At the same time, I’m here to support the team as much as I can and do whatever I can to help out.”
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Stevens joked that it’s no surprise Baynes is eager to play.
"If Baynes had a broken leg, he’d want to play,” said Stevens. "That’s just Baynes.”
The Celtics could be down another big man as Daniel Theis remains questionable with a left foot sprain suffered in the Thursday night win over the Thunder.
Theis went through walkthrough but was working with the training staff after shootaround to gauge whether he could go. Stevens dubbed him, “uncertain.”
That could put pressure on the rest of Boston’s young bigs playing behind Al Horford, especially with the talent the Pistons have up front.
"I think it’s one thing to have bigs, it’s another to have really talented bigs,” said Stevens. "When you talk about [Blake] Griffin, his kind of evolvement as a player, with how he now is handling the ball in pick-and-rolls… And [Andre] Drummond is doing-what Drummond's always done — he’s always been good against us doing it -- rebounding, playing in the seams, passing, and then finishing everything 12 feet high. They present a lot of problems.”
The Pistons are 4-0 under new coach Dwane Casey.
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