Hallelujah, Jesus (Shuttlesworth). Ray Allen will return for the Celtics tonight.
Doc Rivers said Allen will have “no restrictions,” but cautioned that Allen could miss more time later in the postseason if his ankle doesn’t respond well to jumping straight into the NBA playoffs after three weeks of relative inactivity. Allen will need to deal with pain throughout the postseason, but even so, the Celtics now have a capable scorer off the bench.(CLNS Radio)
“There are no restrictions,” Rivers said. “Obviously he hasn’t played — he hasn’t gone up and down since he’s been injured. We did only half-court yesterday, so tonight will be his first time playing full court in about three weeks.”
As Rivers said, “I think he came to a conclusion that the pain’s not going to go away. He has to find a way to play with it and he has to find a way to be effective with it. I think he also probably accepts that there may be a day or two that he can’t play. I think what everyone’s trying to do is eliminate it so when he comes back, he’s back. I don’t think we’re thinking in those terms anymore. We’re just going to go game in and game out and see how it goes.”
Josh Smith is out for the Hawks. Larry Drew said the star’s knee had been improving, but looked significantly worse today.
“Right after he did it, when he left the arena, there was a noticeable limp. The next day, after getting examined and treated and having an MRI, he said it felt better. It had been feeling good each day,” Drew said. “But this was the first day when he tried to go run on it and jump on it and he just couldn’t go.”