The Boston Celtics have jumped out to a 14-4 record this season, all without Robert Williams. However, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, he’s inching closer to a return to the court.
On a recent edition of ESPN’s NBA Countdown, Wojnarowski reported that Williams could be back by Christmas.
“Robert Williams, who had surgery on his left knee two months ago today,” Wojnarowski said. “His agent, Kevin Bradbury told me tonight that he expects Robert Williams will be back by Christmas. That gives him another month here, he’s progressing well on his rehab. And listen, this is a player who had two surgeries in the last calendar year. They certainly want to take their time. Even without him, this is a team with the best record in the NBA, but they expect him to be back by Christmas.”
The Celtics announced that Williams underwent successful arthroscopic knee surgery on September 23, noting that he would be out for 8-12 weeks. It’s been approximately nine weeks since that was revealed.
Williams was an integral part of Boston’s success last year, as he enjoyed a breakout season. He notched career-highs in games played (61) and minutes per game (29.6). The big man averaged 10.0 points, 9.6 rebounds, 2.0 assists, and 2.2 blocks per game on 73.6% shooting from the field, and he earned All-Defensive Second Team honors.
While Wojnarowski revealed that Christmas could be a potential return date for Williams, other reports indicate that he could be back sooner. According to Heavy Sports, Williams could potentially be back by December. But at the same time, the Celtics want to be extra careful with him.
“You don’t get the sense they are too worried about it,” an Eastern Conference GM told Sean Deveney of Heavy Sports. “Like, he could play probably at the beginning of December or so, but there is no need to rush, and they don’t want it to come back up again.”
While a Christmas return would be a great luxury for the best team in the league, his long-term well-being is far more important, especially considering the injury issues that he’s dealt with for the majority of his career.