Pierce injured his foot in Monday's win over the Washington Wizards during a collision with Caron Butler as the two dove to chase a loose ball in the first quarter. Pierce returned in the second quarter, but sat out the entire fourth period for precautionary reasons.
Reports surfaced Tuesday indicating Pierce might have a broken foot, but Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge told Comcast SportsNet, the TV home of the Celtics, during the afternoon that the team did not have an injury update at that time.
"We basically don't know the extent of the injury," said Ainge. "The doctors don't have all the information to make the decision. We expect to make an announcement [Wednesday]."
By late evening, after the team examined X-rays taken earlier in the day, the team issued the following press release:
The Boston Celtics announced today that forward Paul Pierce suffered a strained left mid-foot during the first quarter against the Washington Wizards on February 1. He is currently listed as day-to-day.
A team source believes that no further tests (MRI or X-rays) are scheduled for Wednesday and Pierce will simply be evaluated by team doctors to gauge when he might be able to return. The team has not ruled out that he could play against the Miami Heat on Wednesday night, though they will proceed with caution.
Pierce's injury diagnosis is in line with what he told reporters following Monday's win.
“It rolled over when Caron landed on it," said Pierce. "I think I have a mild mid-foot sprain. I’ll check it out [Tuesday] and get an X-ray. I feel good, but I did have pain in the foot."
The reeling Celtics, who dropped three straight before Monday's triumph in the nation's capital, appear to have dodged a bullet with Pierce's diagnosis. It will be interesting to see if Pierce, voted an All-Star reserve by the league's coaches last week, attends the festivities in Dallas, or if he chooses to rest the foot during the upcoming break.
Phoenix Suns and former Boston College forward Jared Dudley Tweeted Monday that Pierce had been invited to participate in the 3-point shootout, something Pierce had lobbied hard to be a part of this season. The NBA will officially unveil the participants Wednesday.