The Boston Celtics are limping toward the end of the season.

The Celtics could have to overcome yet another injury Wednesday when they visit a Milwaukee Bucks team looking to avoid its longest losing streak of 2006-07.

Boston (23-50) has been without leading scorer Paul Pierce for the last two games because of a sore left elbow, and with the Celtics in last place in the Eastern Conference he is considering sitting out the remainder of the season.

Coach Doc Rivers said Monday that he didn't expect Pierce, who averages 25.0 points, to return against the Bucks.

"The doctors told me at least three games," Rivers said on Celtics' official Web site. "I'll just go by that."

Pierce missed 24 games from Dec. 22-Feb. 7 with a stress reaction in his left foot. Boston went 2-22 without him over that span.

Making matters worse, in practice on Thursday, Al Jefferson aggravated a left knee injury he first suffered March 21 against Charlotte.

"I seriously doubt it," Jefferson told the team's site when asked if he would play of Wednesday. Jefferson is second with 15.8 points and also averages a team-high 10.9 rebounds.

Rivers said the team might try to sign at least one player to a 10-day contract to help fill out the roster.

"I'd already asked them to see if we could bring a guy in so we could have 10 guys," Rivers told the team's Web site. "Now we would have to bring two in (to get to 10 players), and I think the league would allow us to do that with all of the injuries we have."

Despite being without Pierce, the Celtics beat Cleveland 98-96 on Sunday for their third victory in four games. Gerald Green matched a career-high with 25 points and Jefferson chipped in 24 points and with a career-high tying five blocked shots for Boston, which took advantage of the Cavaliers playing without LeBron James.

"They were missing their best player and we were missing our best player," Jefferson said. "We stuck in there."

The Bucks, meanwhile, dropped their seventh straight on Tuesday night, falling 119-101 to the New Orleans. Milwaukee, which also lost seven in a row in February, hasn't dropped eight straight since March 20-April 1, 2005.

Milwaukee (25-48), which has the second-worst record in the East, fell to 2-7 since Larry Krystkowiak took over as coach after Terry Stotts was fired last month. Michael Redd returned to the lineup after missing one game with a sore left knee and scored a game-high 27 points, while Lynn Greer added a career-best 19 points.

The Bucks are without center Andrew Bogut and forward Charlie Villanueva, who are out for the season with injuries.

"Our frontline is so depleted. That definitely played to their advantage," Redd said. "We're all to blame for it because we have to do a better job of rebounding."

Milwaukee has lost the first two meetings between the teams this season, after winning all three games against the Celtics last season.


Copyright 2006 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited