Ray Allen returns to Celtics' lineup

Updated: April 4, 2012, 7:39 PM ET
By Chris Forsberg | ESPNBoston.com

BOSTON -- Boston Celtics guard Ray Allen said he expects no limitation when he returns to the starting lineup on Wednesday night after a six-game absence because of right ankle soreness.

After receiving a cortisone shot, Allen said he's felt noticeably better the past two days and his mobility has returned, allowing him to get back on the court for Wednesday's visit from the San Antonio Spurs.

Is he 100 percent?

"I don't know what 100 percent feels like," Allen said. "During the season, it's really hard to say, that number is mythical. I don't know anybody that's felt that (during the season). You just kind of manage how you can, and if you get out there and you can do the job, that's what we strive for."

Allen said he'll have to see how the ankle responds to game conditions, but expected no limitations after going through a full practice session Tuesday and experiencing no flare-ups.

"It's interesting. I just know my body so well, the difference, coming in today, and even practicing yesterday -- it's night-and-day difference, to be able to push and get lift," Allen said. "Again, tonight, we'll see."

The Celtics were 5-1 without Allen as he dealt with the ankle (and 10-1 without Allen overall this season). Avery Bradley made a strong case to remain in the starting lineup while filling in, but coach Doc Rivers downplayed the issue of putting Allen back with the first unit.

"I thought about it," Rivers admitted. "It's not a big deal, guys. I know (media members) want to make it one, but it really isn't. I don't think guys care one way or the other (about starting)."

Chris Forsberg

Celtics reporter, ESPNBoston.com

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