The Celtics have two meetings scheduled with the New Jersey Nets at the TD Garden this season — the first was on Nov. 24, when the Celts came back for an 89-83 victory, and the second coming on Wednesday night. Over the three months in between, Delonte West has been through a lot.
It was that Wednesday night, the evening before Thanksgiving, when West broke his right wrist for the second time in his career. Colliding at the rim with the Nets' Travis Outlaw as he finished a driving layup with 2:47 left in the second quarter, West went down and took a while to get up.
He's been working hard since that night to recover from the injury. He underwent surgery to repair the wrist, he wore a cast for weeks, and he worked tirelessly to strengthen the arm again after the cast came off. Last week, he returned to practice with the Celtics, and now he's ready for a game again.
There's a chance that West's time with the Celtics will resume exactly where it left off — home at the Garden, taking on the Nets on a Wednesday night. But there's also a chance the C's will remain cautious. West sat out the end of the team's Tuesday practice after being inadvertently hit on the right hand. There's a chance West ends up delaying his return until after the All-Star break.
Let's hope not. West has spent the last 12 weeks working toward a comeback, and Wednesday night would be the perfect setting — back at home, getting a rematch with the Nets, and getting a chance once again to prove he can contribute for the Celtics.
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