Pierce (sprained MCL) will play in Game 6


Pierce (sprained MCL) will play in Game 6

WALTHAM Paul Pierce has a sprained MCL in his left knee that has bothered him in Games 4 and 5, but it won't keep him out of tonight's game.

Pierce was among the Boston Celtics to participate in the team's morning shoot-around.

Team officials confirmed Pierce's MCL injury, but added that he will not be listed as a game-time decision.

Pierce initially suffered the injury during shoot-around prior to the C's 101-79 Game 4 blowout win. Because of the lopsided nature of the victory, the Celtics Captain logged less than 17 minutes. However, he re-aggravated the injury in Game 4 and was on the bubble for playing in Game 5.

Pierce made the start, but it was clear that the knee was giving him some problems. Having Pierce at less than full strength limited one of the few Celtic players who can create their own shot off the dribble.

The most glaring area in which Pierce's knee injury had a noticeable impact, was in the number of free throws attempted by Pierce in Game 5 - zero.

In the C's three wins over Atlanta, Pierce has averaged more than nine free throw attempts. In the two losses, that number plunges to just 1.5 per game.