Health Boston Celtics’ Biggest Concern?
It seems like we’ve been quizzing poor (Doc) Rivers on health on a daily basis ever since the Celtics raised Banner 17. Whether it’s been the knees of Kevin Garnett and Kendrick Perkins, or the heels of Shaquille O’Neal and, most recently, (Paul) Pierce, rarely a day has gone by when Rivers hasn’t been asked for some sort of medical update.
Back in the day, when the questions weren’t so frequent, Rivers used to remind probing reporters that “Doc is just a nickname.” Over the past four years, he’s spent so much time with trainer Ed Lacerte, you wonder if he’s doing a residency while working toward an actual medical degree.
But it’s actually easy to understand the persistent questions on the injury status of Celtics players. Over the past four seasons, nothing has been more important to Boston’s championship quests than health. And nothing has been more instrumental in derailing it.
Tip-off for the 2011-12 season is a mere five days away and Rivers expressed concern Tuesday about whether Pierce would be ready for a Christmas Day visit to New York because of a bruised right heel. What seemed like a minor ailment suffered on the first day of training camp has grown more worrisome as Pierce has been shut down yet again with the goal of getting him game-ready later in the week.