BOSTON — The Celtics will be down two point guards when they visit the Chicago Bulls on Saturday.
The team announced after Friday night’s 101-98 win over the Indiana Pacers that neither Marcus Smart nor Rajon Rondo will travel with the team on its one-game road trip.
Smart’s absence is obvious. The rookie suffered an ankle injury during Friday’s game and had to be taken off the court on a stretcher. Head coach Brad Stevens confirmed that Smart underwent an MRI after the game but could not give a definitive diagnosis.
“It’s a sprained ankle, or broken, we don’t know,” Stevens said. “Obviously, we’ll do the X-rays and all that stuff. We’re hoping it’s a sprain, but we don’t know that. So obviously, (there’s) a great deal of concern for him, number one.”
Rondo, meanwhile, will undergo a procedure over the weekend to remove a screw from his surgically repaired left hand. The point guard has played in all five games for the Celtics after missing the entire preseason. He dished out a game-high six assists against the Pacers to go along with eight points and four rebounds.
These developments almost certainly will result in an uptick of minutes for Evan Turner, who has spent time at the point throughout the regular and preseason, and Phil Pressey, who saw his first legitimate playing time of the season Friday night.
The Celtics will enjoy a three-day break after their date with the Bulls before the Oklahoma City Thunder come to town Wednesday night.
Thumbnail photo via Mark L. Baer/USA TODAY Sports Images