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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Celtics' Kemba Walker has extremely relatable take on driving in Boston

Celtics' Kemba Walker has extremely relatable take on driving in Boston

Kemba Walker is still adjusting to life as a Boston Celtic, maybe more so off the court than on it.

During the Celtics' annual Shamrock Foundation Tip-Off Gala on Thursday, Walker was asked about driving in Boston. He responded with possibly the most relatable quote of all time to all of us regular folk who have trouble driving in the city.

Don't worry, Kemba. You're not alone.

Despite putting up with the troubles up commuting in and out of Boston, Walker has been all smiles since coming to his new city over the summer. The Celtics hope the positive vibes that have surrounded the team since Walker came to town will last throughout the 2019-20 season, which begins Oct. 23 against the Philadelphia 76ers.

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Kemba Walker reveals his real height at Celtics Shamrock Gala

Kemba Walker reveals his real height at Celtics Shamrock Gala

Kemba Walker had been listed at 6-1 his entire NBA career, but on Thursday night he revealed what his real height is at the Celtics' Shamrock Gala. 

“My real height came out a few weeks ago and I’m 5-11,” Walker said at the event. 

The NBA set forth an initiative to get every player's actual height recorded so there wasn't any type of false information floating around. The only questionable part of it all is that every player's new measured height is without shoes, and NBA games are played with shoes if you haven't noticed. 

Either way, this confirms what many have already believed about Walker's height. As great a scorer and competitor he is, his lack of size poses questions regarding his ability to be the go-to option on offense in the biggest moments. Isaiah Thomas was terrific in every way offensively, but there was only so much he could do when a defense honed in on him during the playoffs. 

Two-way wings are typically the players that lead teams to championships, so if Jayson Tatum, Gordon Hayward or Jaylen Brown can turn into the No. 1 option for the Celtics, Walker poses as the perfect running mate to give defenses fits. Until then, Boston will have to lean on him as they did with Thomas, but it's clear this time has far more upside than the Thomas-led Celtics ever did. 

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