The knee injury that Robert Williams sustained near the end of the 2021/22 season continues to be an issue for the Celtics big man, who will undergo arthroscopic surgery on that troublesome left knee, reports Sean Deveney of Heavy.com.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter links), the procedure is expected to require a recovery period of four-to-six weeks. Williams will miss training camp and the preseason, but the hope is that he’ll be back in the Celtics’ lineup early in the regular season, Woj says, adding that the plan is for him to have the surgery later this week (Twitter link).
Williams initially underwent surgery on the knee in March after tearing his meniscus. He was able to return to the court less than a month later and played a part in the Celtics’ run to the NBA Finals, though he wasn’t at 100% in the postseason. The 24-year-old sat out five games in the second and third rounds of the playoffs and reportedly required extensive treatment as he dealt with fluid build-up.
Williams enjoyed a breakout season in 2021/22, establishing new career highs in PPG (10.0), RPG (9.6), BPG (2.2), games played and started (61), field goal percentage (73.6%), and several other categories. He also helped anchor the NBA’s top defense.
As Deveney writes, the hope was that Williams would be ready to go this fall after resting the knee during the offseason, but it appears that won’t be the case. The procedure will leave the Celtics – already missing Danilo Gallinari due to a torn ACL – shorthanded in the frontcourt to open the season.
Al Horford, Grant Williams, Luke Kornet, camp invitee Noah Vonleh, and two-way player Mfiondu Kabengele are among Boston’s top available big men heading into training camp. As Bobby Marks of ESPN observes (via Twitter), we’ll likely see Jayson Tatum play plenty of minutes at power forward in the early going to help fill the gaps in the depth chart.