BOSTON – Shane Larkin is optimistic.
You have to be when you’ve traveled as complicated a road playing professionally as he has.
While disappointed with his left shoulder injury suffered in Boston’s Game 4 loss at Philadelphia, Larkin remains hopeful that his injury will heal enough to where he can contribute at some point during Boston’s upcoming Eastern Conference finals series against Cleveland.
“I’m not ruling anything out,” said Larkin in an interview with NBC Sports Boston and the Boston Globe. “It’s still fresh, it’s still sore. I can’t really do much. It’s frustrating but you have to stay positive.”
Larkin added, “It’s just an unfortunate thing.”
Especially when it appears Larkin’s season could potentially be over now.
Celtics head coach Brad Stevens said he did not anticipate Larkin back anytime soon.
Surgery at this point is not an option being seriously considered.
“Not from anything we’ve been told, but he got hit pretty good,” Stevens said. “The imaging suggested surgery probably won’t be needed.”
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While Larkin hasn’t put up big numbers for Boston, there’s no mistaking the fact that he has been an X-factor in a few games this season by tipping the scales of success in Boston’s favor with his play-making and surprisingly solid defense.
“That’s something that just kind of came after a while,” Larkin said in an earlier interview with NBC Sports Boston. “Every team has scorers, but not every team has guys who want to defend and do so at a high level. That’s kind of where I’m at now.”
And the Celtics clearly benefited from that aspect of his game.
“He’s done a lot of great things for us all year and through the playoffs,” Stevens said of Larkin. “So, it’s a bummer for him. That’s where you always start in these scenarios. And then we’ll figure it out.”