|Kendrick Perkins swoops in to block Rocket Yao Ming's shot in the first quarter. (JIM DAVIS/GLOBE STAFF)|
Lacerte makes the call
Team is not well enough to practice
You know things are bleak when the trainer has to call off practice. Yet that is what happened after the Celtics' 111-80 loss to the Rockets last night. Two more players were injured in the game. A third was sore. And trainer Ed Lacerte told coach Doc Rivers not only to call off practice today, but to keep all players out of the gym.
"That's the first time he's ever done that since I've been here," Rivers said of Lacerte's suggestion. And with only eight available bodies, it wasn't a tough call to make. Rivers concurred.
Delonte West suffered a mild concussion when he got elbowed over the right eye midway through the third quarter. He headed to the locker room and did not return. Afterward, he was taken to New England Baptist Hospital, where he was to get a CT scan and spend the night under observation.
Ryan Gomes missed the second half with a sore right foot. "The injury is more in the middle of the foot, so that part of it is a little scary," Rivers said. Gomes had scored 9 points in the first half.
And Al Jefferson, after pummeling Houston with an 18-point, 11-rebound first half, rested most of the fourth quarter because of an arch strain in his right foot. Jefferson said only that the foot was "sore," adding, "I guarantee it's nothing that will keep me out. It's sore, that's all."
Asked about the injury bug, Paul Pierce, who missed 24 games with a left foot injury, said, "It's something we just haven't been able to escape all season."
The Celtics weren't alone in their misfortune. Yao Ming, in his second game after missing 32 with a broken bone under his right knee, dislocated the middle finger on his right hand in the fourth quarter. X-rays were negative.