Avery Bradley injures shoulder in Game 3 vs. Hawks


Avery Bradley has been a huge contributor for the Celtics this season, filling in for both Rajon Rondo and Ray Allen who have missed time with injuries. He’s a dogged defender and can attack the rim with his athleticism. He’s fought a shoulder injury all season, however, and on Friday, re-injured it against the Hawks. From CSN New England:

The 6-foot-2 guard suffered a left shoulder injury in the third quarter of Boston’s Game 2 matchup with the Atlanta Hawks.

After heading back to the trainer’s room, the Celtics initially said that Bradley would return.

However, about five minutes later they said that he was done for the night.

via Bradley injures shoulder, uncertain for Game 4.

Without Bradley, it’ll mean more minutes for Rajon Rondo at point, and Mikael Peitrus at back-up shooting guard. Ray Allen has been coming off the bench. Should Bradley be unavailable, Allen will return to the starting lineup, assuming his ankle is healthy enough after playing long minutes Friday to go in Game 4. Injuries seem to be more and more of a factor not just in this series, but in the playoffs overall.

Chris Paul, after breaking finger, intends to play in Clippers preseason game tomorrow

Chris Paul
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Chris Paul broke his finger Saturday.

The initial diagnosis said the injury wasn’t serious.

Here’s confirmation.

Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times:

Paul obviously wouldn’t push it during the preseason. If the Clippers are allowing him to play, this can’t be bad.

Really, the most challenging aspect to this is grasping the concept that a broke finger can be a minor injury.

Report: David Lee, Tyler Zeller in line to start for Celtics; Jared Sullinger, Jonas Jerebko out of rotation

MADRID, SPAIN - OCTOBER 08: David Lee of Boston Celtics attacks during the friendlies of the NBA Global Games 2015 basketball match between Real Madrid and Boston Celtics at Barclaycard Center on October 8, 2015 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
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Brad Stevens has a big challenge this year – sorting the Celtics’ deep roster of similarly able players.

It seems that process is shaking out at power forward and center.

A. Sherrod Blakely of CSN Northeast:

it appears Boston’s first four bigs will be starters David Lee and Tyler Zeller, with Amir Johnson and Kelly Olynyk off the bench.

That leaves Jonas Jerebko and Jared Sullinger, potentially on the outside looking in as far as the regular rotation is concerned.

Lee is the best passer of the bunch, which could partially explain why he’s starting. Boston’s most likely starting point guard, Marcus Smart, is still growing into the role of the lead ball-handler at the NBA level. Lee and presumptive starting shooting guard Avery Bradley can take some pressure off him.

Olynyk can space the floor for Isaiah Thomas-Johnson pick-and-rolls with the reserves and run pick-and-pops with Thomas himself.

I’m a little surprised Zeller is starting over Johnson, though. The Celtics just signed Johnson to a $12 million salary, and I thought they’d rely on his defense to set a tone early. Like Johnson, Zeller is a quality pick-and-roll finisher who can thrive with Thomas.

This is particularly bad news for Sullinger, who – barring a surprising contract extension – is entering a contract year. It seems those reports of offseason conditioning haven’t yet paid off. Jerebko’s deal also isn’t guaranteed beyond this season, but at least he has already gotten his mid-sized payday. Sullinger is still on his rookie-scale contract.