The Boston Celtics will be without one of their All-Stars tonight against the Minnesota Timberwolves (8 ET, League Pass) after guard Kemba Walker had his left knee drained.
Walker, who is averaging 21.8 points per game this season, also received a Synvisc injection in the knee to help alleviate swelling and soreness. Coach Brad Stevens said Walker's knee looks good structurally, but that the team will continue to manage the injury throughout 2019-20.
#NEBHInjuryReport Kemba Walker had his knee drained and received a synvisc injection to help with swelling and soreness. He will be out for at least tonight's game, according to Coach Stevens.— Boston Celtics (@celtics) February 21, 2020
Brad Stevens said today that Kemba Walker had his left knee drained and received an injection to help with both swelling and soreness. Walker is out for at least tonight's game in Minnesota.— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) February 21, 2020
Kemba Walker had a little bit of swelling when he came back to Boston. He got it drained.— Jay King (@ByJayKing) February 21, 2020
“We’ll see how it goes from here,” Stevens said.
He’ll be out “at least tonight.”
Knee looks good structurally, but it’s something he’ll need to keep managing.
“Obviously he didn’t [practice] Wednesday, and then we decided to - what is it? – drain the swelling,” Stevens told reporters Friday. “And then he got an injection of Synvisc, which is a pretty common thing when guys are dealing with swelling and knee soreness.”
Walker is in his first season with the Celtics and has missed seven games this season. However, he missed three straight games from Feb. 1-5 because of left knee soreness before this latest bout of it cropped up after the All-Star Game.
Stevens said Friday that Walker's current knee condition is different from what he experience in early February.
“The difference between how his knee presented on Wednesday (and) how it presented throughout his period of soreness that we had sat him with, was he just had a lot more swelling,” the coach stated. “Obviously, that was an indicator that we needed to check it. He had another scan. Knee looks good structurally. But he’s going to be managing it and dealing with it, as he has all year.”
Boston was one of the NBA's hottest teams heading into the All-Star break as it had won eight of its past nine games. The Celtics are opening a four-game road trip that features a nationally-televised showdown with the rival Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday (3:30 ET, ABC).
Walker told reporters Friday that he doesn't view Walker's injury as a long-term one and said "playing Sunday will be in the discussion."