May 7, 2021 7:00 PM ET
After missing the last two weeks of April with a sore left knee, Robert Williams has landed back on the Boston Celtics injury report with turf toe (a sprain of the ligaments around the big toe joint) in his left foot.
This will sideline the high-flying big man for at least Friday night’s contest against the Chicago Bulls, and possibly beyond, according to head coach Brad Stevens, who dished out the initial details of the injury prior to tip-off at United Center.
“Well turf toe's an interesting one,” Stevens pointed out. “For anybody who's ever had it, it's a nuisance. It's a difficult thing to deal with. He's meeting with specialists and figuring out the best method of attack. He almost sat out Wednesday (against Orlando). It's one of those things that you can play through, but the pain is pretty significant, and I think that each time he plays, it's gonna feel more and more. So he's gonna sit tonight and I don't know what his availability will be like any time in the next week.”
In the meantime, the Celtics are going to need other guys step up against a physical Chicago frontcourt which boasts the likes of All-Star Nikola Vucevic and former Boston big man Daniel Theis, among others.
Fortunately for the Celtics, they will have Tristan Thompson back after missing Wednesday night’s game with a pectoral strain. However, his minutes could be limited post-injury, so Boston will have to dig deep at the center position.
“We'll listen to [Tristan] and if he has any issues at all, obviously, we'll manage that accordingly,” said Stevens. “But Luke (Kornet) has gotta be ready, Tacko (Fall) has gotta be ready. Grant (Williams) as a small-ball five, which is a lot more difficult against this team, just because of how big they are, how many good players they have at that position. I think, obviously, you talk about Vucevic, but then you talk about Theis and you talk about Thaddeus Young. Even (Lauri) Markkanen plays some five for them. They've got a lot of answers at that spot, so it's going to be a challenge.”
- Taylor Snow