C's preparing as though Bosh will play

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C's preparing as though Bosh will play

MIAMI The Boston Celtics will continue preparing as though Chris Bosh will play for the Miami Heat tonight, even as Heat coach Erik Spoelstra remains non-committal on the all-star forward's availability.

After Miami's shoot-around this morning, Spoelstra said Bosh went through the entire shoot-around, but his availability won't be determined until shortly before tip-off.

"He Bosh was able to go through a workout yesterday; he was able to go through shoot-around today," Spoelstra said. "We'll just have to continue to evaluate."

No one knows if the Heat are legitimately unsure if Bosh will return tonight after missing the last nine games with an abdominal strain, or whether Miami is simply keeping it under wraps to keep the C's guessing.

Miami Heat players repeatedly said they don't know if Bosh will play, although all indications based on his workouts with the team point towards his return to the lineup being tonight.

"He looks comfortable in what we've been able to do," said Heat forward LeBron James. "I think we all know a shoot-around or walk-through practice is totally different from what we've been doing on the floor as far as game time. We'll see."

Added Dwyane Wade: "He's been out for a while. Whenever he gets back on the floor, it'll take him a while to get his rhythm back."

Celtics coach Doc Rivers has no idea if Bosh will play. But he has maintained that the C's have prepared as though they would see Bosh in each of the four previous games.

So from Boston's standpoint, knowing whether he plays until shortly before game time won't have any impact on them in terms of their game preparation.

But in terms of the actual game, Bosh's return has the potential to indeed be a game-changer.

"We definitely have to be aware. He's another big scoring threat for them," said C's Paul Pierce. "He can really put up some big numbers on any given night."

Added Pierce. "If he plays, he plays. We'll have a game plan for him. If not, we'll go as we go."

Even if the Heat do know one way or another about Bosh's availability, Rivers said he would probably keep it to himself until the last minute, too.

"It may give you an advantage, especially if you're not going to play him," Rivers said. "The team spends time, wasting time, working on if he's going to play. I would do the same thing. I wouldn't tell you until late. But I don't know if it matters one way or another."

Lowry, Sullinger and Blount interrupt interview with DeRozan

Lowry, Sullinger and Blount interrupt interview with DeRozan

DeMar DeRozan didn't get a chance to answer one question in his postgame interview before being interrupted by Kyle Lowry, Jared Sullinger, and LeGarrette Blount.

Sullinger on Celtics: 'I watch from a distance, I support from a distance'

Sullinger on Celtics: 'I watch from a distance, I support from a distance'

BOSTON – The trip to the TD Garden is one that Jared Sullinger has made many times but never like this. 

The former Celtic was back in town with his new team, the Toronto Raptors who signed him to a one-year, $5.6 million deal after the Celtics rescinded their qualifying offer to him and thus made him an unrestricted free agent. 

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“I had a feeling it was going to go that way once they signed big Al (Horford), that they were going to let me go,” Sullinger said prior to Friday’s game.  “We were prepared for it. It is what it is. I’m happy these guys are doing well.”

And he hopes to say the same for himself sometime in the future after undergoing surgery to have a screw inserted in the fifth metatarsal of his left foot – the same foot he had season-ending surgery on during the 2014-2015 season with the Celtics. 

There’s no specific timetable as to when he’ll be back on the floor, and Sullinger is cool with that plan. 

“I don’t know. They’re hiding the protocol from me so I won’t rush; we’ll see,” said Sullinger who is still in a walking boot. 

The 6-foot-9 forward played well in the preseason and solidified himself as the team’s starting power forward. 

Now that he’s out with another injury, he’ll have to once again try and prove himself either later this season when he returns, or this summer when he becomes a free agent again.

For now, Sullinger is happy to be back in town, seeing lots of familiar faces, friends and ex-teammates that he says he still keeps in close contact with. 

“Some of these guys I considered like brothers to me,” Sullinger said. “IT (Isaiah Thomas), Jae Crowder to name a few. So I watch from a distance, I support from a distance. They’re playing well.”

In addition to his former teammates, the lines of communication remained open between him and Celtics head coach Brad Stevens as well. 

Stevens said the two exchanged text messages right before he had foot surgery, and afterwards. 

“Obviously, everyone here wishes a speedy recovery and hopefully he gets back on the court soon,” Stevens said. 

Sullinger has been an effective player during his time in the NBA, with career averages of 11.1 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. 

But this will be the third time in his five NBA seasons that he will miss a significant amount of time on the court due to an injury or recovering from an injury. 

Stevens acknowledged that he feels for Sullinger who once again has to go through rehabilitation in order to get back on the floor.

“I like Jared a lot,” Stevens said. “He’s a heck of a player, he’s a really smart guy. Got a lot of respect for him and it stinks that he’s got to go through that but he’ll come back strong I’m sure.”