CHICAGO When the Boston Celtics prepared to board their flight to Chicago, there was familiar face waiting for them -- Kevin Garnett.
"Kevin, when he wants to play, he lets you know he wants to play," said Doc Rivers.
Garnett got his wish, with the C's medical staff giving him the green light to return to the Celtics lineup in time for tonight's game against the Chicago Bulls.
Garnett, who is averaging 14 points and 7.7 rebounds per game this season, did not play in Boston's 98-88 loss to Detroit on Wednesday due to a hip flexor injury.
Rivers said Garnett's return to the lineup is consistent with the initial timetable once it was determined he had a hip flexor injury.
"It's more Eddie (Lacerte, the team's trainer) and Kevin," Rivers said. "Both thought because he had given him two day's rest, with the two days off and with the third day, and Eddie had originally said he thought three days would be very healthy for him. That's basically what we did."
For the second straight season the trade deadline came and went with no moves from the Boston Celtics.
President of basketball operations Danny Ainge continues to look at the big picture as his team moves forward with their roster intact.
“It wasn’t for lack of trying, last year and this year,” said Ainge. “We came away with Al Horford in the summer. We drafted Jaylen Brown, Jaylen just continually getting better. I’m very excited about the future of both those guys. We were also able to get Ante Zizic, who is having a terrific year over in Turkey. I think that our future is looking good.
“We hope to have another good summer this year, whether we use the draft pick, whether we trade the draft pick. I think we can’t go wrong, as long as we don’t screw it up and pay too much for certain assets.”
With the NBA trade deadline in the rear view mirror, the Celtics will have to turn to the buyout market if they are looking to make changes to their roster.
Talking to CSN Celtics Insider A. Sherrod Blakely, Danny Ainge explained why signing players who have been bought out can be a risky move for a team like the Celtics.
“We’ll weigh each guy that comes on the market and see if that can be a boost to our team,” explained Ainge. “At the same time, I like our team. Bringing in new players sometimes messes up your whole chemistry, and it shifts somebody into a different role that they’re not accustomed to doing. You better know what you’re getting.
“We brought in Michael Finley, Sam Cassell. . . PJ Brown turned out to be a very good asset to us. Most of the time it sort of disrupts things. At the end of the year you go, ‘wow, we probably shouldn’t have done that.’ Even though on paper it looked like a great acquisition, it wasn’t as good as everyone thought it would be.”