Celtics guard Avery Bradley could be unavailable for the rest of the first round series against the Atlanta Hawks.
According to C's coach Brad Stevens, his starting two-guard and best perimeter defender is "very unlikely" to play for the foreseeable future after suffering a strained right hamstring in Game 1.
"Avery has a pretty significant strained hamstring. I would say he would be doubtful for any of the remainder of the series, certainly very unlikely Tuesday night [Game 2]," Stevens said. "As of right now, I would say he's out Tuesday night, but obviously he'll continue to get treatment around the clock and go from there." [ESPNBoston.com]Bradley underwent an MRI on Sunday, after he "heard a pop" at the 6:48 mark in the fourth quarter of Saturday night's 102-101 loss in Atlanta.
He landed awkwardly while defending Hawks guard Jeff Teague on a layup attempt halfway through the fourth. The Celtics veteran said he "felt weird" after landing and collapsed to the ground and immediately grabbed his hamstring while trying run up the court. He had to be helped into the locker room by his teammates and would not return.
Bradley finished with 18 points on 7-of-16 shooting in 33 minutes of action.
Marcus Smart (15 points, and 5 assists), who sprained his right index finger in the second quarter of Game 1, says there will be "no change with Avery being out," when asked about his increasing role.
"Just have to keep doing what I do," said Smart. "It's just going to be [that] I'm going to have more time to make more effort plays and intensity plays and help my team win.
"Our little slogan is '[We're] one superstar.' It's us as a team. So this isn't anything new. If Avery was here or not, my responsibilities would be the same." [ESPNBoston.com]Smart sat out Sunday's practice with a wrap over his left hand, claims he could have played if there were back-to-back games
Kelly Olynyk (2 points, 1 rebound in 12 minutes), did not play late in the Saturday's game due to having a sore right shoulder, the same one that sidelined him for a month. No word if the power forward will miss any time, but he did practice on Sunday.
Stevens knows the Celtics have to stay focused and keep moving forward, if they want to beat the Hawks and win the series despite his team being banged up.
"We've obviously had games without [Bradley] before," Stevens said. "We have to have other guys step up. I think the biggest challenge is that we're playing small anyways and so you might have to go even deeper into that, which is OK. We'll have to decide if we're gonna go with some of those young guys and go deep and play four smalls again or if we're gonna play more traditional again and go back to playing that way. So we'll look at it and figure that out over the next 48 hours." [ESPNBoston.com]Bradley is the Celtics second leading scorer behind Isaiah Thomas, and it won't be easy to fill in the shoes of arguably the team's best two-way player.
We will keep you posted on any chances or injury updates.
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