Pietrus shows promise in Celtic debut

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Pietrus shows promise in Celtic debut

BOSTON A couple of minutes was all Mickael Pietrus wanted in his Boston Celtics debut on Wednesday.
He got more than just a couple minutes - 18, actually.
And the Celtics may have more than just someone to lighten the load for Paul Pierce.
Pietrus made quite a splash in his first game with the C's, a 90-85 loss to the Dallas Mavericks.
The 6-foot-6 wing player finished with five points which included a 3-pointer - his first shot attempt as a Celtic.
He also had two steals, the last one ultimately resulting in a Boston lay-up that tied up the game in the fourth.
"He was phenomenal," coach Doc Rivers said when asked about Pietrus. "He was one of our best players in the game."
Those comments only strengthen the words of Rivers in recent days when discussing how Pietrus has been one of the team's top players in practice.
Boston would love for Pietrus to give the C's another scoring option off the bench. But even more important than that, is his athleticism and versatility as a defender.
"He's exactly what we need," Rivers added. "And it's just going to get better."
Pietrus certainly hopes so, both for himself and the Celtics (4-5), who are still in search of their first win over a team with a winning record.
When he reached a buyout with the Phoenix Suns last month, Pietrus said he already had his mind made up that he wanted to join the Celtics.
He has rattled off many reasons since then as to why he so desperately wanted to be in Boston.
But there are 17 - as in, the number of Celtics titles - that immediately come to mind.
"Anytime I step on the floor I'm trying to give the team my heart," Pietrus said. "The Celtics are my heart now. I tell you everything, that's what I'm going to bring every night and I'm not going to lie to you, I'm here to win a championship!"
And he'll help the C's towards that end by simply being a reliable role player.
As far as what that role will be, Pietrus keeps it pretty simple.
"My role is to win championships. That's why I'm here for, to win championship. I want them to have one this year with me," Pietrus said. "So I'm very excited. My role would be like every time I step on the floor, to help my team win basketball game, play as hard as I can."

Patriots-Steelers injury report: Seven Pats listed as questionable

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Patriots-Steelers injury report: Seven Pats listed as questionable

The injury report for Sunday's Patriots-Steelers game:

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

QUESTIONABLE
WR Danny Amendola (ankle)
TE Martellus Bennett (knee)
RB Brandon Bolden (knee)
LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder)
WR Chris Hogan (thigh)
WR Malcolm Mitchell (knee)
DL Jabaal Sheard (knee)

PITTSBURGH STEELERS

QUESTIONABLE
TE Ladarius Green (concussion/illness)
LB James Harrison (shoulder/triceps)
RB Fitzgerald Toussaint (concussion)

NOT LISTED
RB Le'Veon Bell (not injury related)
K Chris Boswell (illness)
LB Anthony Chickillo (ankle)
S Sean Davis (shoulder)
C B.J. Finney (illness)
WR Darrius Heyward-Bay (illness)
DE Ricardo Mathews (ankle)
QB Zach Mettenberger (illness)
S Michael Mitchell (not injury related)
QB Ben Roethlisberger (not injury related)
LB Vince Williams (shoulder)

Bradley still hurting, will miss Celtics game vs. Trail Blazers

Bradley still hurting, will miss Celtics game vs. Trail Blazers

WALTHAM, Mass. – The right Achilles’ strain that has kept Avery Bradley out of five of the Celtics’ past six games, will continue to keep the 6-foot-2 guard sidelined.
 
Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Bradley will not play Saturday against the Portland Trail Blazers.
 
Stevens added that no additional tests have been taken and the Achilles’ itself is structurally fine.
 
“He’s got a lot of soreness around it, and that’s one of those things you have to be ultra-careful with,” said Stevens, who later added that Bradley would not practice with the team today. “When he [Bradley] came back, he said he felt a lot better, and then he played and the next day he practiced. We didn’t do anything live but he did a lot of cutting and did not feel near as good. That’s why he didn’t play Wednesday.”
 
The absence of Bradley was clearly felt in a 117-106 loss to the New York Knicks on Wednesday, a game in which Knicks guard Derrick Rose – the man Bradley would have likely spent defending most of the game – scored 30 points.
 
This season, all-NBA first team defender is  the Celtics’ No. 2 scorer at 17 points per game along with averaging a team-best 6.9 rebounds.
 
In addition, Bradley is shooting a career-best 40.9 percent from 3-point range, as well as dishing out 2.4 assists per game, which also represents a career-high for the 26-year-old.