The word coming out of Charlotte is good news on the Celtics’ injury front:
#NEBHInjuryReport Aron Baynes had an MRI on his ankle yesterday that came back encouraging, according to Brad Stevens. He’s back in Boston now and could play as soon as Sunday.— Boston Celtics (@celtics) March 22, 2019
#NEBHInjuryReport Brad Stevens says that Gordon Hayward is continuing to progress through concussion protocol and is unlikely to play tomorrow, though he has not yet been ruled out.— Boston Celtics (@celtics) March 22, 2019
The Celtics are preparing to face the Hornets on Saturday and will return to the Garden for a Sunday showdown against the visiting Spurs. The Baynes update is a little surprising. After being diagnosed with a Grade 2 left ankle sprain with a typical recovery timetable of 2-4 weeks, Danny Ainge declared Baynes “day-to-day” yesterday and it looks like the big man could return versus his former team.
Hayward’s health is a little more nebulous. Brad Stevens indicated earlier in the week that Hayward showed no ill effects after some physical activity and the next step will be getting cleared by the league’s doctors. Nevertheless, it looks like both players will be back very soon. After this weekend’s back-to-back, the Celtics have a one-game roadie to Cleveland on Tuesday and a pivotal contest against the Indiana Pacers at home.
#NEBHInjuryReport for tomorrow vs Charlotte:— Boston Celtics (@celtics) March 22, 2019
Aron Baynes (left ankle sprain) - OUT
Gordon Hayward (NBA Concussion Protocol) - OUT
Al Horford (left knee soreness) - OUT
The Celtics had planned on sitting Horford 3-4 games over the final stretch of the regular season. The front end of this weekend’s back-to-back makes sense with the Celtics hosting the Spurs on Sunday.