By Jessica Camerato
WALTHAM Doc Rivers enjoys watching Rajon Rondo out on the court, but this season he has been seeing him out there a little too long for his liking.
Rondo is averaging over 37 minutes per game this season, and Rivers has been worried about his playing time.
With Delonte West and Von Wafer injured, and rookie Avery Bradley still developing, the Celtics lacked a reliable option behind Rondo.
So they made finding a backup point guard for a Rondo a priority. On Saturday, they came to terms with veteran Carlos Arroyo.
The guy Ive got to keep down more is Rondo, Rivers said after Rondo played nearly 42 minute on Friday against the Golden State Warriors. Even though hes young, hes still playing too many minutes the last four or five games. With Delonte out, thats put a lot of stress on us as well.
Arroyo was waived by the Miami Heat prior to their acquisition of Mike Bibby. The nine-year veteran averaged 5.6 points and 2.0 assists this season.
The acquisition of Arroyo gives Rondo the opportunity to get some additional rest during the games. Even though he is only 25, Rondo, like the majority of the Celtics, suffered injuries this season.
After battling through a strained left hamstring and sprained left ankle, Rondo is being cautious about his health as he plays major minutes.
Id benefit a lot from playing less minutes, he said. But we dont practice long, we practice hard, so thats key for my recovery. Im doing what I can do on off days as far as getting my rest, icing, getting a massage, so Im young. Ill be ok.
As the Celtics look to add healthy bodies, they still wait for the return of Shaquille O'Neal. O'Neal is not expected to play on Wednesday against the Los Angeles Clippers as originally targeted.
"Shaq probably will not be ready on Wednesday it looks like now because its foots bothering him again a little bit," coach Doc Rivers said after practice on Saturday.
The Celtics are hoping West (ankle) will return on Wednesday. Wafer is day-to-day after straining his right calf on Friday.
"When they say theyre healthy, Im playing them," said Rivers. "Weve just got to get them on the floor."
Jessica Camerato is on Twitter at http:twitter.comjcameratonba