West, O'Neal out for Celtics season finale vs. Knicks


West, O'Neal out for Celtics season finale vs. Knicks

By A.Sherrod Blakely

BOSTON When Delonte West re-aggravated a right ankle injury on Monday, Celtics coach Doc Rivers feared the worst.

"I thought right away, 'we just lost him for a couple weeks,'" Rivers said.

West won't play tonight, but the ankle has improved to where Rivers expects him to suit up on Sunday in Game 1 of the playoffs against the Knicks.

"Today feels better than yesterday," West said.

Rivers echoed similar sentiments.

"He looked good," Rivers said. "He felt a lot better today."

While it's far from a sure thing when it comes to Celtics and their ability to recover from injuries, Rivers said West would "definitely" play in Game 1 on Sunday.

Rivers was not as confident in the return of Shaquille O'Neal who remains out with a strained right calf injury suffered against Detroit on April 3.

"It's too early to tell," Rivers said when asked about O'Neal returning on Sunday.

In addition to West and J. O'Neal, Rivers also planned to keep the Celtics' Big Four - Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett - and Jermaine O'Neal out of action on Wednesday.

A. Sherrod Blakely can be reached Sherrod on Twitter at http:twitter.comsherrodbcsn