Celtics News: Aron Baynes' Ankle Injury Diagnosed as Grade 2 Sprain

Megan ArmstrongContributor IIIMarch 21, 2019

Boston Celtics' Aron Baynes returns to the bench 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 center Aron Baynes exited Wednesday night's game at Philadelphia after 12 minutes of playing time with what the team has now reported is a Grade 2 ankle sprain.

Baynes went up to contest a layup from 76ers point guard T.J. McConnell and landed awkwardly on Celtics point guard Marcus Smart's foot, which caused him to twist his own. At the time he checked out of the game, Boston was up 58-45.

Baynes did not return, and the Celtics fell to the 76ers 118-115.

Boston was also without forward Gordon Hayward, who is making his way through the NBA concussion protocol.

Baynes has appeared in just 43 games this season, starting 10, because of nagging injuries. The 32-year-old missed significant time from December to January with a fractured hand and then played just one game in February because of a foot contusion.

The loss to Philadelphia puts Boston back four games from the 76ers and third in the Eastern Conference. The team owns a 43-29 record and is fifth in the Eastern Conference. With 10 games remaining in the regular season, it would make sense for head coach Brad Stevens to sit Baynes until the playoffs.

Fortunately for the Celtics, they own one of the deeper rosters in the league and can compensate for Baynes' injury. Al Horford already shoulders the majority of responsibility at center. However, Horford has been dealing with persistent knee injuries throughout the season.

Baynes is usually depended on defensively, as his offensive statistics—5.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, 1.1 assists per game—are underwhelming.

It has been a contentious season in Boston with players such as Marcus Morris lamenting the group's morale publicly. The last thing this particular Celtics group needs is for the injury bug to start gnawing at its roster down the stretch.

Related

    Will D-Lo Be Worth Max Money to Anybody?

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Will D-Lo Be Worth Max Money to Anybody?

    Yaron Weitzman
    via Bleacher Report

    The Most Interesting FAs Nobody's Talking About

    Boston Celtics logo
    Boston Celtics

    The Most Interesting FAs Nobody's Talking About

    Dan Favale
    via Bleacher Report

    Every Team's Pitch to Its Top FA Target

    Boston Celtics logo
    Boston Celtics

    Every Team's Pitch to Its Top FA Target

    Greg Swartz
    via Bleacher Report

    How the Clippers Can Go from No. 8 Seed to No. 1 Seed

    NBA logo
    NBA

    How the Clippers Can Go from No. 8 Seed to No. 1 Seed

    The Ringer
    via The Ringer