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Atlantic Notes: Crowder, Olynyk, Carroll, Embiid

The Celtics are concerned that they may be without Jae Crowder for their first postseason series, according to Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe. Crowder suffered a high ankle sprain during Friday’s game, and coach Brad Stevens said he will miss at least two weeks. However, recovery time is typically four to six weeks, which could extend past the first round of the playoffs.

Crowder averages 14.4 points and 5.5 rebounds per game, but his biggest impact for the Celtics comes on defense. “There aren’t a ton of guys that can guard [power forwards] for long stretches or sometimes [centers] for long stretches, and Jae can do all that,” Stevens said. “So that’s one of the things that’s going to be quite a balancing act without him, and we’re going to have to have guys step up and play.”

There’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Boston’s Kelly Olynyk, who has been out since suffering a right shoulder sprain on February 10th, hopes to be ready for Tuesday’s game with the Pacers, Himmelsbach writes in the same piece. Olynyk was able to participate in a full practice today.
  • The Raptors are hoping to have DeMarre Carroll back in a week or two, according to Mike Ganter of The Toronto Sun. Carroll, who came to Toronto as a free agent last summer, has missed more than 40 games after undergoing arthroscopic surgery in January and dealing with plantar fasciitis. “He’s a guy who doesn’t like to miss games,” said former Hawks teammate Paul Millsap. “He’s a competitor. He likes to be out there. I’m really shocked it’s been this long.”
  • Sixers fans have started coming to home games early to watch Joel Embiid work out, writes Tom Haberstroh of ESPN.com. The third overall pick in the 2014 draft hasn’t played yet, but his pregame routine is providing hope that his surgically repaired foot can one day handle the rigors of NBA competition. Philadelphia officials are also encouraged by Embiid’s recent trip to the Aspetar sports science facility and sports medicine hospital in Qatar. “The facilities are A-plus all over the place,” said coach Brett Brown. “For us, it was an A-plus. For Joel, it was an A-plus. We wanted to go outside the box and do something creative and shake Joel’s world up a little bit and make it exciting.”
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3 thoughts on “Atlantic Notes: Crowder, Olynyk, Carroll, Embiid

  1. The question is who takes his place in the starting lineup. Turner is a possibility, however he has really flourished off the bench and I dont see his skillset meshing with the starting 5. He cant shoot for spit, and he likes the ball in his hands to make plays and score (not a good pairing with IT on the floor). After that your pretty much relying on the youngsters, which is good considering they need to play some meaningful minutes against NBA competition. But you’d be asking alot for any of Clarke, Young or Hunter to come in and play productively in the starting lineup. Stevens has always been good at juggling lineups, and it might not matter much who gets put in with the designated “Starters” (look no further than Amir Johnson to see that a guy who starts the game can also see no more then 15 minutes when its all said and done).

    • I could see them going small with Smart replacing him in the starting lineup. I agree that Turner is far too valuable to the second unit to start and not very effective off ball anyways.

  2. Dana Gauruder

    The Raptors have played so well the past couple of months that you almost forget they’ve done without their prize free agent signing. If Carroll can contribute in a meaningful way during the playoffs, the Cavs may not be a lock to reach the Finals after all.

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