Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

Celtics’ Kristaps Porzingis is dealing with a rare injury that could keep him out of Game 3 of the NBA Finals – Boston Herald

By meerna Jun12,2024

DALLAS — Two days ago, Kristaps Porzingis had no doubts about playing in Game 3.

Now his status is in complete doubt.

Porzingis is considered controversial by the day and officially listed as questionable after spraining a tendon in his left foot/ankle late in the third quarter of the Celtics’ Game 2 win over Dallas on Sunday. He has a “torn medial retinaculum, allowing for a dislocation of the tibialis posterior tendon in his left leg,” according to a press release from the team, which described the injury as “rare.” According to Celtics big man and coach Joe Mazzulli, whether Porzingis plays in Game 3 on Wednesday now depends on the team’s medical staff.

“For my part, like I said, there’s nothing that’s going to stop me unless I’m banned or banned from playing,” Porzingis said Tuesday. “That’s the only reason I (won’t) be there.”

“He’s doing everything he can to be ready for tomorrow’s match,” Mazzulla added. “It’s a serious injury and ultimately our medical team won’t put him in any bad situation. We made the decision to play the game out of his hands.

The medial retinaculum is connective tissue that helps hold tendons in place, including the tibialis posterior muscles, the largest tendon in the ankle that attaches the calf muscle to the bones of the foot. Porzingis told reporters he was injured while fighting with Dallas center Dereck Lively for a rebound on a Celtics free throw. After the collision, his left leg was lost at the knee and ankle.

Porzingis said he wasn’t sure if playing would pose a risk of more injuries, but he remains optimistic about suiting up despite finishing in the second game in 4:40.

“I am. Yes, I have to be. I am optimistic. As I said, I will do everything in my power to be on the pitch tomorrow,” he said. “We’ll see.”

In a news release, the Celtics said Porzingis’ new injury is unrelated to the right calf strain that sidelined him throughout the second round of the playoffs and the Eastern Conference Finals. After more than a month off, Porzingis made a triumphant return in Game 1 of the Finals, scoring 20 points in 21 minutes in a stunning victory in Boston. In the second game, he played 23 minutes and left with statistics of 12 points, four rebounds and two blocks, hitting 4 of 7 shots on target.

Porzingis’ offensive spacing and defensive rim protection gave Boston early control of the Finals.

“KP has been incredible for our group, not only in the playoffs but throughout the season,” Jaylen Brown said Tuesday. “It’s obvious that he helps us take it to another level on the court.”

Brown added that the Celtics pride themselves on their “next-up” mentality. Boston is 30-5 this season without Porzingis, including the playoffs.

“We prepare for these moments to be able to play with or without anyone,” Brown said. “It just takes someone else on our team to step up and have everyone believe in it to get a complete team victory.”

Teammates described Porzingis as upbeat on Tuesday, although he did not participate in the portion of practice open to the media.

“(Porzingis) always has a great attitude,” Celtics guard Jrue Holiday said. “It’s something you don’t have to worry about. He is just like this joy and this light. Every time he walks into a room, no matter what’s going on, he brings it every time.”

By meerna

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