By Kevin Perrington-Turner, Contributing Writer
Brad Stevens has work to do for the playoffs as the regular season comes toan end, it looks like Boston Celtics fans will have a lot toworry about.
Gearing up for the playoffs, the C’s currently sit at the #2 seed in the Eastern Conference at 54-26.
One spot off from last season where they were the #1 but were stopped by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals. Although there are only two games left in the season, there still is uncertainty for whom the Celtics will play in the first round. But whoever they end up facing, they will have to do it without their two best players Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving.
Recently on Instagram, the former NBA champion made a post confirming that he will beout for the rest of the season.
After a knee surgery last month, the all star point guard possessed an infection in his knee. Which in return shifting his return for the 2018-2019 season.
He said onhis post, “finding out I have an infection inmy knee is definitely a moment that I now accept and move past without holding onto the all the what ifs, proving the nay-sayers completely [expletive]wrong, and accomplishing the goals I’ve set out for the team and myself.
This season was only a snapshot of what’s to come from me. Trust me.”
Kyrie will not be the first all star on the Celtics squad to miss the whole post season.
In the first game of the season, Gordon Hayward suffered a gruesome ankle injury that would sideline him for the whole 2017-2018 campaign.
Although that hasn’t stopped this young group from gaining one of the top spots in the Eastern standings.
With a young coach in Brad Stevens, this team has racked up crucial wins in the Garden and on the road.
As Marcus Smart is expected to come back around the second round, they will need all the help they can get. This team will get put to the test with their two initial starters will be unavailable.
Luckily, the veteran Al Hortford will be ready to try and lead this group to a Championship contention. A place they haven’t been since 2010. If they end up having another face-off between the Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals, it would be a change not having Kyrie Irving in the picture.
Thankfully, many other players have stepped up over the course of the regular season. And with this final push, they expect the same moving forwardinto the playoffs. With rookies like Jayson Tatum, Semi Ojeleye, and Daniel Theis playing heavy minutes, they have a high production for their first season in the pros.
As far as other young guys such as Jaylen Brown, Terry Rozier, and Shane Larkin they have stepped up to the plates and filled big shoes. As they are a good reason for the team standing at the second spot in the East.
As Kyrie’s surgery was scheduled for April 7th, we will keep a close eye on the guard and hope for a speedy recovery. As for the playoffs, there are a lot of hungry teams looking toprove themselves.
The C’s will have a high mountain to climb if they want to make it back to the Eastern Conference Finals.