Celtics

Stevens: Larkin (shoulder) out for Game 5 and beyond

Stevens: Larkin (shoulder) out for Game 5 and beyond

WALTHAM, Mass. – No disrespect to Shane Larkin, but the news of him being out for Game 5 tonight got nothing more than a shoulder shrug from Celtics coach Brad Stevens.

That’s because Larkin being out with a left shoulder injury is the latest setback for a team that has had plenty of them all season.

And yet here they are, one win away from advancing to the Eastern Conference finals, where the Cleveland Cavaliers, having swept the top-seeded Toronto Raptors earlier this week, will be waiting.

“I don’t anticipate him back anytime soon,” said Stevens. Larkin, the C's backup point guard, was injured when he collided with Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid in the first half of Game 4. He immediately left the game and didn't return.

While Larkin did not play major minutes for Boston, his presence was among the many factors that have led to Boston jumping out to a 3-0 series lead against Philadelphia.

“We’re just going to have other guys step up,” Stevens said. “We’re used to that. At the end of the day, it is what it is.”

Stevens added, “He’s played well in this series and has done a lot of great things for us all year and through the playoffs. It’s a bummer for him. That’s where you always start in these scenarios. And then we’ll figure it out.”

Without Larkin, the Celtics may rely on Terry Rozier to play longer shifts than we’ve seen thus far in this series.

When speaking to the media prior to the team’s morning shoot-around, Rozier said he didn’t know Larkin was out.

“We just have to do what we can,” Rozier said. “This has been our team. We had to get Game 1 without Jaylen Brown. It’s the story of this team; that’s just how it goes.”

Larkin has played in all 11 of Boston’s playoff games this year, averaging 3.7 points, 1.8 assists and 1.0 rebounds per game while shooting 45.7 percent from the field.

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DeAndre Hopkins made perfect Paul Pierce comparison after injuring ankle

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USA TODAY Sports

DeAndre Hopkins made perfect Paul Pierce comparison after injuring ankle

DeAndre Hopkins was the truth Saturday night. Apparently he still feels that way.

The Houston Texans wide receiver went off for 170 receiving yards and two touchdowns on 10 catches in a win over the New York Jets. He injured his ankle after one of those TD grabs, though, and his teammates actually carried him off the field.

That prompted Hopkins to make a perfect Paul Pierce comparison Tuesday night on Twitter.

You remember the "wheelchair game," right?

That's where the photo on the right is from: Pierce had to be carried off the court by his Boston Celtics teammates in Game 1 of the 2008 NBA Finals and later was wheeled to the locker room after injuring his knee.

But "The Truth," like Hopkins, returned to the game, finishing with 22 points in a 10-point Celtics win over the Los Angeles Lakers that paved the way for Boston's 17th championship.

The stakes were a little lower for Hopkins on Saturday, but his Texans did earn their 10th win to vault ahead of the New England Patriots for the AFC's No. 2 seed.

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Is LeBron James trying to speak Anthony Davis-to-Lakers into existence?

Is LeBron James trying to speak Anthony Davis-to-Lakers into existence?

The answer was obvious, but that didn't make it any less frightening.

LeBron James was asked Tuesday about the possibility of the Los Angeles Lakers acquiring New Orleans Pelicans superstar Anthony Davis via trade.

"That would be amazing," James told ESPN's Dave McMenamin. "That would be amazing, like, duh. That would be incredible."

This shouldn't shock you; James obviously wants to play with good players, and Davis is a bona-fide superstar who would make the Lakers instant contenders.

It's still notable that LeBron was so candid about a potential trade, though. Los Angeles reportedly is one of the favorites to land Davis if he leaves the Pelicans, and an endorsement from James -- who shares Davis' agent, Rich Paul of Klutch Sports -- certainly won't hurt those chances.

The Celtics would rather he stayed quiet; Boston has been "hawking" Davis as a trade target for years, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski recently confirmed, and could go head-to-head with the Lakers this summer in a Davis sweepstakes.

This all assumes Davis decides he wants out of New Orleans: The 25-year-old big man is under contract until 2021 with a player option following the 2019-20 season, and the Pelicans likely wouldn't trade him unless he requested a deal.

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