Beating the Miami Heat is a challenge anyway, but Boston is going to have to do it without Paul Pierce on Tuesday night.
Doc Rivers confirmed that, reports A. Sherrod Blakely at CSNNE.com.
That means Sasha Pavlovic gets the start and Marquis Daniels will get a lot of run. Pavlovic talked about getting to guard LeBron James.
“I just have to be as much as aggressive as I can be, make it as hard as I can for him to score the basket,” Pavlovic told CSNNE.com. “Obviously, (LeBron and Dwyane Wade are) both great scorers. It’s not like I’m going to stop them from scoring, but I have to make it tough for them.”
The Celtics missed Pierce on Christmas Day in a loss to the Knicks, they missed his shot creation and ability to drain the midrange jumper. They will miss his maturity against the Heat — Miami wants to run and Boston will want to control the tempo. Pierce is very good at that.
The Celtics play Wednesday in New Orleans, no word yet on if he will go for that game.
Mario Hezonja, the No. 5 pick in this year’s draft, has never lacked for confidence. The Croatian guard made his pro debut in the Magic’s preseason game against the Hornets on Saturday and did this:
Between Hezonja, Elfrid Payton, Victor Oladipo and Aaron Gordon, the Magic have a nucleus of young players that has the potential to be a lot of fun. Even if they’re still a few years away from contending, they’re definitely going to be a League Pass favorite this year.
Preseason is only just getting underway and there’s already a potentially serious injury to report. In the game between the Hornets and Magic on Saturday night, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was taken to the locker room after suffering a right shoulder injury. The Hornets announced that he was then taken to an Orlando-area hospital for follow-up x-rays:
A few hours after the game, the Hornets announced that Kidd-Gilchrist has a dislocated shoulder:
Depending on the severity of the injury, he could miss a few weeks or a few months. Hopefully, it’s the shorter end of that timeline. We should know more on Sunday.