The Boston Celtics announced that center Vincent Poirier has a fractured right pinkie and will be out for at least six weeks:
#NEBHInjuryReport Celtics center Vincent Poirier suffered a fractured right pinkie finger during yesterday’s practice. The injury will require surgery and he is expected to return to play in approximately six weeks. Further updates will be provided as appropriate.— Boston Celtics (@celtics) December 17, 2019
Per the team, Poirier’s injury will require surgery, which is likely lengthening his timeline to return.
To this point in the season, the French big man has played sparingly for Boston, having seen just 44 minutes over nine games. Most of those appearances have been in garbage time, as Poirier has been behind Daniel Theis, Enes Kanter and Robert Williams in the big man rotation. Brad Stevens has also regularly called upon Grant Williams to play the center spot in small-ball lineups.
The Celtics depth up front will be tested, as Poirier joins Robert Williams (hip edema) on the shelf. Williams will be out for at least the next three weeks before being re-evaluated. That leaves Theis and Kanter as the only healthy centers on the regular roster. Stevens will likely lean on Grant Williams for additional minutes, as he has preferred to rotate three players at the five most nights.
Boston will likely also call up Two-Way player Tacko Fall from the Maine Red Claws on the NBA G-League. Fall has appeared in just one NBA game thus far in his rookie season, when he got in at the end of a blowout victory over the New York Knicks in late-October. With Maine, the 7’6’’ Fall has been impressive. He’s averaged 13.6 points (on 67% shooting), 9.3 rebounds and 2.5 blocks over 22.4 minutes per game in eight appearances, all off the bench. Fall recently recovered from a knee injury that sidelined him for about two weeks of action.
With several games coming up against the NBA’s lesser teams over the next few weeks, this is a chance for Stevens to give some extra minutes to Grant Williams and find some time for Fall to see the floor. While injuries are never a good thing, this could be a blessing in disguise for Boston, as their younger players have an opportunity to gain some valuable experience.