During Tuesday night’s loss to the Sixers, the Celtics were dominated in the paint, with Joel Embiid scoring 35 points and getting to the line 20 times. Luckily for the C’s, their front court should get a boost for Wednesday night’s meeting with the Knicks.
Tristan Thompson hasn’t played since mid-March as he’s been in the NBA’s health & safety protocol. However, the 30-year-old center was not listed on the Celtics’ Wednesday injury report. This comes after head coach Brad Stevens told the media he was ‘hopeful’ Thompson would make his return against the Knicks.
Thompson was the C’s starting center through much of the early portion of the season before landing in the health & safety protocol on March 16. In 36 games with the Celtics, he’s made 31 starts and averaged eight points and eight rebounds in 23 minutes per game.
In Thompson’s absence, Daniel Theis took over as the starting center, but was traded to Chicago shortly after. That opened up the door for 2018 first-round pick Robert Williams, who has made the most of the opportunity. In six games as a starter, he’s averaging 10.5 points per game while shooting 74.3 percent from the field. He’s also recorded 10 rebounds and two blocks per contest.
Assuming he’s active Wednesday night, it will be the first time the Celtics have Thompson available since the trade deadline, and Williams assumed the starting center role. Somebody will have to see a dip in minutes, whether it’s Thompson, Williams, or trade deadline acquisition Luke Kornet. How Stevens adjusts the rotation will be one of the biggest storylines to watch in this game.
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Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at abarth@985TheSportsHub.com.