Celtic coach Doc Rivers said he held Kevin Garnett out of action after a first-half right knee strain in a 90-85 loss to the Utah Jazz Thursday night in Salt Lake City.
"He wanted to run but we have a long season and I'm not taking a risk by putting him on the floor," Rivers said of Garnett. "We would have loved to have him, obviously, it probably would have made a difference. Unless he's close to 100 percent, I'd rather have him healthy for the playoffs. That's how I look at it."
Celtic captain Paul Pierce agreed with the cautious approach: "Hopefully Kevin will get healthy as soon as possible, we've been injured a lot this season but the most important thing is to just get healthy going into the playoffs. You know, you want him to take his time and not try to kill himself in the regular season. If we don't have home-court advantage, so be it, we have to find a way to get it done."
Garnett issued the following statement: "As you know, I suffered an injury, a strain to my right knee, during the game and I really don't have any comment about it. I will have the knee re-examined (Friday) and we should have more information at that time. Obviously, I would much rather be playing instead of providing this statement."