Rajon Rondo will enter the playoffs dinged up but ready to go
Bulls guard Rajon Rondo knows what basketball is like in Boston at this time of year. He played nine seasons with the Celtics, including their championship run in 2008.
‘‘I mean, it’s gonna be crazy,’’ Rondo said Saturday as the Bulls prepared for Game 1 of their Eastern Conference playoff series. ‘‘The fans are one of the best I’ve ever seen. We’ve got to be ready. It’s still going to be basketball, but we have to play a game with minimum mistakes and go out there and see what we can do.’’
Unfortunately, Rondo won’t be doing that at full health. While his sprained right wrist is good enough for him to play, it’s definitely not 100 percent.
Coach Fred Hoiberg knows not all is right with Rondo.
‘‘He still feels a little bit of pain in that wrist, obviously,’’ Hoiberg said. ‘‘That’s going to be there. I thought he battled through it [in the season finale Wednesday against the Brooklyn Nets]. I thought he gave us great energy. I thought our pace picked back up with him in the lineup. It was great to have him back.’’
After missing three games with the injury, Rondo returned to contribute 10 points and five assists in 20 minutes against the Nets.
The good news for the Bulls is that while Rondo was out, Jerian Grant averaged 15.7 points and played some of his best basketball of the season.
Guard Dwyane Wade was able to get three games under his belt after coming back from a fractured right elbow, and Hoiberg said he will get extended minutes in the playoffs.
‘‘We’re going to continue to push the minutes up,’’ Hoiberg said. ‘‘We had a goal of about 28 [against the Nets] if we needed him. He was in there a little longer than he normally would’ve been, just to try to get him a little bit of a rhythm.
‘‘He’s continuing to come back from injury. It was an injury with his arm, and he was given full clearance for that. It’s more now of how he’s feeling from a conditioning standpoint.’’
Thomas’ sister killed
Celtics star Isaiah Thomas’ sister, Chyna, 22, was killed in a one-car accident on Interstate 5 in Washington state early Saturday, multiple outlets reported.
According to the News Tribune (Tacoma, Washington), which cited Washington State Patrol and family friends, Thomas’ car, a 1998 Toyota Camry, traveled off the road around 5 a.m. and hit a barrier, which a state patrol spokesman said ‘‘vaulted the vehicle head-on’’ into a signpost.
According to the state patrol, Thomas wasn’t wearing her seatbelt at the time of the accident and died at the scene.
Contributing: USA Today
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