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