If watching the Boston Celtics’ six-game winning streak come to an end Wednesday night was not bad enough for Celtics fans, they will now have to face the possibility of losing defensive spark plug Avery Bradley again as well.
It's déjà vu all over again.
Said head coach Doc Rivers:
He’s OK, he’s not great. He got hit in the ribs or somewhere; I don’t even know where he got hit. We’ll see tomorrow. He’s not going to practice or do anything today, for sure.
After putting together his best performance of the season during Monday’s win over the Charlotte Bobcats—16 points on 6-of-10 shooting, including 4-of-7 from three-point range—Bradley looked out of sorts on Wednesday night.
He finished with just four points on 2-of-4 shooting in 22 minutes.
Now we know why.
The news comes as a major blow to a Boston team that had finally regained its defensive swagger with Bradley back on the court.
In 30 games prior to his return, the Celtics allowed opponents an average of 98.1 points per game. They went 14-16 in that stretch.
During the eight games Bradley has been back, Boston has only allowed 86.8 points per game. The team is 6-2 in those contests.
The Bulls—winners of two straight and six of their last eight—will be the first of four potential-playoff foes that the Celtics will face over their next six games. They also play the New York Knicks, Atlanta Hawks and Miami Heat.
Here's hoping for Celtics fans that this injury is not too significant. Boston can’t afford to lose its defensive leader right now.
All stats used in this article are accurate as of Jan. 16, 2013
Also check out Why It's Still Too Early to Declare Celtics Officially Back. For complete team coverage and everything Celtics, follow Sebastian on Twitter at @SP7988.