Boston Celtics

Boston Celtics forward Marcus Morris clearly learned his lesson last season when a lingering knee issue sent him on an injury report merry-go-round last year. Which is exactly why the 29-year-old seems more than content to sit out tonight’s head-to-head with the Phoenix Suns due to soreness in his right knee.

“Just be smart about it,” Morris said of his knee ailment. “We’re planning on taking this thing far, a long way, so just sit out.”

The 6-foot-9 Morris has been among the C’s top talents all year, with career-highs marks in points (14.9) and rebounds (6.9) per game, as well as career-best marks from deep (42.4 percent) and from the field as a whole (49.2 percent).

The loss of Morris leaves the Celtics down another potential ironman, as noted by Celtics radio voice Sean Grande.

It’s not all bad, though, as Jaylen Brown (right hand contusion) will indeed be available for the Celtics.

The discomfort in Brown’s hand, which came with Brown’s fall in Dallas on Nov. 24, apparently flared up in last Saturday’s meeting with the Pistons, and made him a limited participant in Tuesday’s practice.

But truth be told, the loss of Morris with or without the return of Brown shouldn’t matter much in the grand scheme of the things, as the Suns come to Boston with wins in just seven of their 31 games this season.

The Celtics defeated the Suns in their only prior 2018-19 meeting, a 116-109 overtime final on Nov. 8.