ATLANTA -- Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers said that, even if Rajon Rondo is suspended for Game 2 of an Eastern Conference quarterfinal series against the Atlanta Hawks, he will not be tempted to rush ailing shooting guard Ray Allen back into the lineup.
Allen sat out Game 1 due to lingering pain with a right ankle that will require surgery after the season to remove bone spurs. Rivers had dubbed Allen at "50/50" before Sunday's game, but he was unable to go. Allen was back on the floor getting up shots as the team prepared to practice Monday afternoon, but Rivers suggested he didn't think Allen would be ready for Game 2.
"If Ray is not ready, he’s not ready," said Rivers. "One thing I don’t do -- I’ll never do it, and maybe I’m wrong in it -- I don’t ever put a guy out if he isn’t ready. I just won’t put him on the floor. If Ray told me he could play and [team trainer] Eddie [Lacerte] said he didn’t think he could play, Ray would not play. That’s just the way it is. [Allen] said he felt a little better, but I don’t see it right now."
Allen sat out the final nine games of the regular season (and 15 of the final 19 overall) due to the ankle issue (he's received multiple cortisone shots trying to reduce the pain). Allen said Sunday that he doesn't want to be a liability when he's on the floor and will wait until his ankle is healthy enough to allow him to compete at playoff intensity.