Celtics' Allen out vs. Nets

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Celtics' Allen out vs. Nets

BOSTON Ray Allen is human after all.

Allen, who has been the Celtic's top scorer this season, will not play in tonight's game because of flu-like symptoms.

Celtics head coach Doc Rivers said Keyon Dooling would get the starting nod, with Avery Bradley being the first guard off the bench.

Allen attempted to go to the C's shoot-around this morning. Celtics trainer Ed Lacerte told Rivers that Allen wasn't feeling well.

"We told him (Allen) to stay away, and if he was feeling better tonight, to come," Rivers said. "And then when he didn't feel much (better), we told him to stay at home."

The Celtics will also welcome back Jermaine O'Neal to the starting lineup. O'Neal did not play in Boston's 94-86 win over Washington on Monday. He suffered a hamstring injury against the Wizards on New Year's Day.

Because the hamstring was still somewhat sore and the C's were playing a back-to-back, the team's medical officials decided to keep him off the floor.

In more injury-related news, Mickael Pietrus continues to inch closer to playing in his first game with the Celtics. He told CSNNE.com that he's hoping to be on the floor sometime next week.

First Celtics practice 'a little different' but 'feels right' for Horford

First Celtics practice 'a little different' but 'feels right' for Horford

WALTHAM, Mass. – NBA players are creatures of habit so you can understand why Al Horford was just a little bit out of his element on his first practice with the Boston Celtics.
 
After nine seasons with the Atlanta Hawks, Horford hit the free agent market this summer and signed a four-year, $113 million with the Celtics.
 
Horford acknowledged that his first practice with the Celtics “was a little different” but added, “It’s definitely a weird feeling, but it feels right to be here.”

Players, coaches, national pundits, the list is seemingly endless when it comes to folks who believe Horford is an ideal fit with the Boston Celtics.
 
“He can do score in the paint, shoot 3s, defend, pass, he can do it all out there,” Amir Johnson told CSNNE.com. “He’s going to fit in well with us.”
 
But like any rookie or newcomer to a team, Horford admitted he had some moments when he was a step or two late getting to where he needed to be on the floor.
 
“We’re running through a lot of plays, a lot of concepts being thrown out,” Horford said. “It’s a matter of getting comfortable with all the sets.”
 
As much as he will work to figure things out, Horford is wise enough to know he’ll need the help of his new teammates, too.
 
“I’m going to lean on a lot of the guys,” Horford said. “I’ll definitely ask a lot of questions. Avery (Bradley) already has gotten in my ear, anything I need he’s there for me. I just want to get acclimated as fast as I can.”
 
Horford also said that head coach Brad Stevens has been extremely helpful in assisting him in speeding up his learning curve.
 
“Coach (Stevens) is very sharp, very . . .  he explains things well,” Horford said. “He explains things well. He wants practice to move along. The pace of practice, definitely a faster pace.”
 
But you won’t find Horford complaining.
 
Horford is clearly excited about starting this new chapter in his basketball career.
 
“For me it’s more of a relief, finally being here in Boston, house, being settled,” Horford said. “Now we can just focus on the season.”