Boston Celtics big man Robert Williams III has been playing through a knee injury throughout the 2022 NBA Finals, and he revealed that he gave up on a particular treatment after learning how to manage the pain.
Williams told Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports that he had his knee drained multiple times during the Eastern Conference Finals, but he's since stopped after the issue didn't subside.
"I was really having my knee drained a lot last series," Williams said. "I stopped draining it because there was no point, in my opinion. My knee kept filling back up with fluid. So, I’ve kind of learned how to manage it to be able to play."
Williams was forced to undergo meniscus surgery late in the regular season. He then suffered a bone bruise in the conference semifinal round against the Milwaukee Bucks. Since then, Williams has been a fixture on Boston's injury report. The 24-year-old detailed his treatment routine that has allowed him to stay on the floor.
"Icing, deep tissue massages, treatment, wait three or four hours and then start the process all over again until [it’s time to sleep]," Williams told Haynes. "Usually that same routine. Maybe a little BFR [blood flow restriction training] here and there, but usually that same ritual."
Per Haynes, Williams has been ensured by Boston's medical staff that he's not risking further injury to his knee, and at this point it's "all a matter of pain tolerance."
When healthy, Williams is a defensive anchor for the Celtics as well as a finisher at the rim. In the NBA Finals against the Golden State Warriors, Williams is averaging 7.0 points, 7.6 rebounds and 2.4 blocks while shooting 88.9 percent from the field in 25.0 minutes per game.
The Celtics are facing a 3-2 series deficit ahead of Thursday's Game 6. Williams said he and his teammates are going to do whatever it takes to ensure that the Warriors aren't celebrating a championship win at TD Garden.
"S--t, we’re trying to win," Williams said. "It’s crazy. I’m living my dream right now. Obviously, it would be way better if we win, but my whole thing is accountability for my team. Letting them know I’m here through whatever, and hopefully, the message is relayed to everyone else."