Bradley (shoulder) questionable for Game 4

Avery Bradley Boston Celtics.jpg

Bradley (shoulder) questionable for Game 4

WALTHAM The Boston Celtics once again approach a playoff game uncertain if one of their top guards will play.

Only now, it's not Ray Allen.

Instead, it's the man who replaced him in the starting lineup, Avery Bradley. C's officials list Bradley (left shoulder) as questionable for tonight's Game 4 matchup.

Bradley, who has been bothered by shoulder problems throughout this season, re-aggravated the injury in the third quarter of Boston's 90-84 overtime win against Atlanta in Game 3.

"It's really sore," Bradley told after the Game 3 win. "Every time I go to extend my arm and it gets hit, it comes in and out."

While he did participate in the team's morning shoot-around, the C's continue to list him as a game-time decision.

As for Allen, who returned to the C's lineup after missing nearly a month because of a right ankle injury, he is expected to play tonight.

Like Bradley, Allen was also able to participate in the team's morning shoot-around which consisted primarily of half court drills with little to no contact.

However, the Celtics understand that Allen's availability could change between now and tip-off, which was the case on a couple occasions earlier this season when he was close to returning to the court.

The 6-foot-5 guard played 37 minutes in Boston's Game 3 win, significantly more than anyone -- Allen included -- anticipated.

Celtics coach Doc Rivers makes no apologies for extending Allen's minutes, which was due in part because of Bradley's shoulder injury.

Said Rivers: "Someone asked me (before Game 3), 'Would there be a minute restriction (on Allen)? I said, 'No, because we don't know when he'll play again or not.' So I'm getting everything I can get out of him each game. I'm saying that jokingly, but somewhat true as well."

If Bradley can not play, the Celtics will look to fill his void from a pool of players that consists of Sasha Pavlovic, Marquis Daniels, Allen and Mickael Pietrus. Boston also may consider going with Keyon Dooling.


Kevin Durant solidifying invitations for free agent meetings, including Celtics


Kevin Durant solidifying invitations for free agent meetings, including Celtics

The wheels of the Kevin Durant free agent train have been set in motion.

"Durant’s representatives at Roc Nation are working to solidify invitations" for meetings with a list of five teams, which includes the Boston Celtics, according to The Vertical's Adrian Wojnarowski. The other teams listed are the Warriors, Clippers, Heat, Spurs and Thunder. The Nuggets, Knicks, Lakers, Rockets, and Wizards could "could still find audiences with him," but they are considered outsiders.

Wojnarowski says the Thunder remain the frontrunners, but "the Warriors have Durant's attention."

If Durant chooses the Warriors it could happen very quickly. Warriors restricted free agent Harrison Barnes could sign an offer sheet for a contract on July 1, which would mean the Warriors would have only have three days to match the deal. They'd likely need a decision from Durant before then, or they'd risk losing one of their valuable pieces without being able to fill his role.

Durant plans on making his decision before July 9 anyway, according to Wojnarowski, because that's when he's leaving for a publicity tour in the Far East.

The fact the Celtics are even on Durant's primary list shouldn't come as a surprise considering his actions after his game in Boston against the Celtics earlier this year. They do have tough competition though. Both the Warriors and Heat have the cap space to absorb Durant's likely max contract worth about $26.4 million, and the Spurs can easily create the space if necessary.

The Clippers are interesting though, because they'd have to deal one of their stars (Chris Paul, DeAndre Jordan, or Blake Griffin) to free the cap space to sign Durant. If he does choose the Clippers, maybe Danny Ainge could help Doc Rivers swing a deal. How about something involving Blake Griffin and Jae Crowder?

But the Celtics have an edge. Their the only team listed that can sign two max contract free agents. If Durant wants to play with his buddy Al Horford, or anyone else for that matter, the Celtics can make it happen easily. How about a 2007 draft class reunion with Durant, Horford, and Jared Dudley? It's an odd trio, but Dudley has already expressed interest in joining the Celtics.

No matter what happens, though, the Celtics are in the race. Celtics fans might be disappointed after Thursday night. But we're just getting started, folks.

Kevin O’Connor can be followed on Twitter: @KevinOConnorNBA


Northeastern's Walker, Ford sign with NBA teams after going undrafted


Northeastern's Walker, Ford sign with NBA teams after going undrafted

The NBA will have more of a Northeastern flavor this season.

The Huskies' star guard David Walker is joining the Miami Heat for the NBA's summer league in Orlando and Las Vegas, according to Sports Illustrated's Jake Fischer.

Walker averaged 17.9 points and 4.0 assists per game as a senior at Northeastern.

Quincy Ford is heading to the Utah Jazz with a partially guaranteed three-year contract after averaging 16.4 points, 7 rebounds, and 2.6 assists per game as a senior. That deal was first reported by The Vertical's Shams Charania.