BOSTON -- Celtics shooting guard Ray Allen will sit out Friday's visit from the New Jersey Nets due to an illness. Mickael Pietrus will take his spot in the starting lineup.
Allen has now missed five games this season, three due to a jammed left ankle suffered in late January. Ironically, he also sat out the Nets' last visit to Boston on Jan. 4 due to flu-like symptoms.
Doc Rivers, who spoke extensively about what he dubbed "silly season" and the trade rumors that swirl at this time of year, laughed and couldn't help but agree when a reporter told him that Allen's absence would probably start a batch of trade scenarios for the veteran guard.
The bigger concern for Boston is making sure the rest of the locker room doesn't come down with the same illness. With 17 games in March, sick players could wreak havoc on the the team.
Rookie E'Twaun Moore is active for Friday's game. Allen joins the inactive list alongside center Jermaine O'Neal, who Rivers said is expected to seek more opinions on his ailing left wrist while contemplating if he can play through the pain the rest of the season. O'Neal will need surgery on the oft-injured wrist at some point after electing to skip it this past offseason.