For all intents and purposes, the Celtics season just ended today with the news that Kevin Garnett will not be ready for the playoffs. That sprained knee is obviously worse than the team had originally thought.
Head Coach Doc Rivers told WEEI-AM that the Celtics will enter the playoffs with the idea of not having KG for any games in the postseason.
"He's not going to be ready. After watching him practice, there's no way," said Rivers. "The way I saw him move today, I don't know if he'll be ready."
Garnett injured his right knee Feb. 19 and missed the next 13 games before returning for four, but never playing as many as 18 minutes.
The Celtics had planned to do with Garnett what the Lakers did with Andrew Bynum--get him back for a few regular season games at the end of the season. But unlike LA's young center, KG was never able to get back on the court.
After watching Garnett run at the team's practice facility Thursday, Rivers said he had to shut him down after about 20 minutes.
"If he can't get through biking and working out without swelling and his leg locking, I don't know how you can play in the playoffs," Rivers said. "This was an honest run today, you couldn't make your way through it. The guy's a warrior, you see him try to mask his way through it. But after 20 minutes of running, I don't see it. After today, there's no way he can play."
And without Garnett, there's no way the Celtics can win another NBA title. Sure, they might be able to reach as far as the Eastern Conference Finals on the backs of Paul Pierce and Ray Allen, but when you are the defending NBA champions, anything short of a successful title defense is a failure.