CHICAGO – Isaiah Thomas did not take to the floor with his teammates for practice on Thursday, but Celtics head coach Brad Stevens said his two-time All-Star was scheduled to arrive in Chicago in plenty of time for Friday night’s Game 3 against the Chicago Bulls.
“The plan of attack is for him to fly back late (Thursday) night,” Stevens said.
Thomas flew to Tacoma, Washington after Boston's Game 2 loss on Tuesday to be with his family after the one-car accident that killed his 22-year-old sister Chyna J. Thomas, on Saturday.
Boston, the top seed in the East this year, lost Games 1 and 2 at the TD Garden and have no choice but to view Friday’s game as a must-win if they are to have any realistic shot at rallying to win this series.
And for that to happen, they will surely need Thomas who leads all players in this series with a 26.5 points per game average.
But as we saw in Games 1 and 2, even with Thomas putting up Thomas-like numbers scoring the ball, the Celtics will need more than that in order to emerge with a win on Friday.
Adjustments are indeed in order if the Celtics are to get back in this series.
“Taking care of the ball is the number one thing,” said Boston’s Al Horford. “And then making sure we get back on defense and get our defense set. I feel that’s a priority.”
But above all else, Boston has to find a way to win on Friday regardless of how the victory comes about as they try and rally from a 2-0 series deficit.
“It’s not where we were expecting to be at all,” Horford said. “But we have an opportunity to come in here (Friday). I know it’s going to be hectic out here. We’re all we have, so we’re fighting for our lives right here. I’m looking forward to (Game 3).”