X

Celtics News: Kyrie Irving Will Play Saturday vs. Lakers Despite Thigh Injury

Megan ArmstrongContributor IIIMarch 8, 2019

Boston Celtics' Kyrie Irving stands on the court during a stoppage in play during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Houston Rockets in Boston, Sunday, March 3, 2019. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)
Michael Dwyer/Associated Press

Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving missed Wednesday night's game against the Sacramento Kings with a bruised left thigh, but the Celtics confirmed Friday afternoon that Irving will be back for Saturday's road game versus the Los Angeles Lakers.

Head coach Brad Stevens described Irving as "fine," and Irving participated fully in practice Friday. Irving told reporters afterward that his missing the Sacramento game was "preventative," as he's trying to be as healthy as possible for the playoffs:

Celtics on NBC Sports Boston @NBCSCeltics

Kyrie injury update... https://t.co/osaMVd5LrF

Chris Forsberg of NBCS Boston captured video of Irving playing one-on-one with forward Jayson Tatum and guard Jaylen Brown:

Chris Forsberg @ChrisForsberg_

Practice ended like 25 minutes ago but this Kyrie v Jayson v Jaylen might go all night. Brad trying to get everyone to the bus. https://t.co/lzL1f5XUZI

Without Irving on Wednesday, Boston topped Sacramento 111-109 behind a game-winning shot from Gordon Hayward. Hayward also led the way in a win over the Warriors on Tuesday with 30 points off the bench.

Irving told Scott Cacciola of the New York Times: "That long plane ride [West Coast trip] helped us out. I'll just say that. We needed it. ... We were going to get to a point where we were just going to get tired of fighting each other, fighting the outside world when it doesn't really matter. So we just wanted to come out here and play basketball."

If the 40-26 Celtics can beat both the Lakers and L.A. Clippers, they will bring a four-game winning streak home to Boston to build upon.

Irving—who has a player option for 2019-20—has missed 12 games but is putting up another stellar stat line with averages of 23.4 points, 7.0 assists, 4.9 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game.

🚨 SPORTS NEWS ➡️ YOUR INBOX

The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.