West out for Celtics, banged-up Pierce is in

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West out for Celtics, banged-up Pierce is in

By JessicaCamerato
CSNNE.com

BOSTON - Delonte West will not play against the New Jersey Nets, held out by what Doc Rivers is calling a freak injury.

West, who suffered a fractured right (non-shooting) wrist on November 24, was expected to make his return on Wednesday. On Tuesday, however, he re-injured his wrist during practice.

Although test revealed there was no further damage, Rivers says West just wasnt ready.

It was a tweak of the wrist, said Rivers before the game against the Nets. He was reaching for the ball, he was going for a steal, which should tell you something, and it was just bad timing.

While there is no timetable set for Wests return, Rivers hopes he will be able to play in the first game after the All-Star Break against the Golden State Warriors. If he is unable to go that night, the Celtics will assess his status on a game-by-game basis.

West was originally projected to return after the break, but his progress had put him ahead of schedule. Last Sunday, he plead his case to play against the Miami Heat. The Celtics said no, but planned for him to play limited minutes against the Nets. On Wednesday, however, Rivers said West did not make an argument.

"No there was no argument today," said Rivers. "I dont think he could play today."

West, meanwhile, has been anxious to get back out on the court. After serving a ten-game suspension for pleading guilty to weapons charges, he played in only five games before suffering the injury.

"I want to play. I'm a player," he said on Sunday. "We've been geared and trained for this, to play through injuries or minor injuries. But I think they're looking more for the big picture. They don't want me to get out there and re-injure it before it's right there at the finish line. So a few more days and Ill be going be going full tilt."

While West will have to wait at least another game, Paul Pierce will play against the Nets. Pierce suffered a sore left foot and sprained right hand but will not sit out.

Jessica Camerato is on Twitter athttp:twitter.comjcameratoNBA

First-place Celtics continue to focus on playing well, not standings

First-place Celtics continue to focus on playing well, not standings

WALTHAM, Mass. – When it comes to NBA standings, no Celtic pays closer attention to it than Isaiah Thomas.
 
But the 5-foot-9 All-Star is quick to say that while he’s aware of what’s happening with other teams record-wise, Thomas, like his teammates, isn’t obsessed with it, even with the Celtics (48-26) now in first place in the East following Cleveland’s loss at San Antonio on Monday.
 
“It’s a good feeling,” Thomas said. “It’s still not the end of the year; anything can happen. It’s a nice feeling to be the number one seed for once, but we just have to continue to control what we can control.”

The fact that Boston is even in position to finish with the best record in the East is amazing when you consider injuries and illnesses have forced them to use 13 different starting lineups this season.
 
And the preferred starting five of Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradley, Jae Crowder, Al Horford and Amir Johnson has played together 31 times and posted an impressive 24-7 record.
 
Celtics coach Brad Stevens has been consistent in his message that while having the best record in the East is nice, he’s more consumed with the team continuing to improve.
 
“It doesn’t mean a whole lot right now,” Stevens said of being in first place. “The whole idea is to make progress, get better every day and stay in the moment. You do that if you’re in last place trying to build up or whether you’re in a position where you’re fighting for seeding. Ultimately, we’ve been able to grow and get a little bit better. But I still think we can play a lot better. That’s where my focus is.”
 
And the same holds true for his players. Thomas knows how unusual this season has been for the Celtics, who continue finding ways to win despite frequently being short-handed.
 
The latest example of that involves forward Jonas Jerebko, who is questionable for Wednesday’s game against Milwaukee because of a sore left knee that limited him in Tuesday’s practice.
 
“It’s a long season. A lot of things can happen whether they be good or bad and we know that,” Thomas said. “We just try to withstand the storm we’ve had a few times this year, and continue to try and stay as positive as possible and we’ve done that. We’re in a good position right now. We just have to continue to take care of business.”
  
And that means steadily improving while piling up the wins, particularly against teams such as the Bucks (37-36), who are among a handful of teams that could potentially be Boston’s first-round opponent.
 
Milwaukee comes in having won 11 of its past 14 games.

“It makes the game that much more important,” said Celtics guard Avery Bradley. “Just like the Miami game. We want to let the teams know now, they go up against us in the playoffs, it’s no mercy. We’re going to play hard. We’re going to bring it every single night. We’re going to play Celtics basketball every single night. Them knowing that, we can scare a lot of teams if we’re playing the right way.”

Jerebko questionable for Wednesday against Bucks

Jerebko questionable for Wednesday against Bucks

WALTHAM, Mass. – The Celtics have spent most of this season playing short-handed and Wednesday’s game against Milwaukee will potentially be another one of those games.
 
Veteran forward Jonas Jerebko has a sore left knee and is considered questionable for the Bucks’ game.
 
“Jonas went through about half of [Tuesday’s] practice,” said Celtics coach Brad Stevens.
 
Jerebko has missed two games this season due to illness.
 
Because of Milwaukee’s length at seemingly every position, Jerebko’s ability to play both forward positions will be something the Celtics will surely miss if he’s unable to play.
 
This season, Jerebko has appeared in 69 games while averaging 3.9 points and 3.4 rebounds while shooting 44.1 percent from the field and 35.0 percent on 3’s.