Rookie forward Jared Sullinger underwent lumbar disc surgery Friday at New England Baptist Hospital, the team announced. He will miss the rest of the season and be ready in time for training camp next fall.
The Celtics are already playing without Rajon Rondo who they lost for the rest of the season with a knee injury.
Sullinger didn’t practice Thursday, and there didn’t seem to be too much concern over his status. There was even some thought originally that he’d play Friday against Orlando.
“I’m not that concerned,” Doc Rivers told reporters Thursday. “Can he miss games here or there? He may, but it’s not anything [long-term] or anything like that.
“My guess is that he plays with it every day. I keep saying, because I had a back injury my whole career, once you have a back, you have a back. It never goes away. You just have to play through it.”
Sullinger, who saw his draft stock fall because of the back issues, had been a pleasant surprise for the C’s this season. He appeared in 45 games and averaged 6.0 points and 5.9 rebounds per game while seeing 20 minutes per night.