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Garnett could be out until Jan. 6

Posted by Gary Washburn Globe Staff  December 30, 2009 03:41 PM

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PHOENIX -- Celtics coach Doc Rivers doesn't like what he has seen lately from Kevin Garnett and he said Wednesday morning it may be time to give his ailing power forward a break.

Garnett was kicked in his surgically repaired right leg during Monday's loss to the Golden State Warriors and although he scored 16 points with nine rebounds, Rivers is pondering giving Garnett a break -- meaning he could miss tonight's game against Phoenix and Saturday's game against the Toronto Raptors.

The Celtics get a three-day break after the Raptors game and don't play again until Jan. 6. So considering Tuesday's day off, if Rivers decides to sit Garnett, he would get an eight-day break before the Miami game.

"Obviously, you have to look big picture," Rivers said at the shootaround. "That's what this is all about. We'll see. But I can tell you I'm leaning heavy that way. Someone would have to talk me out of it. If I sit him, I'm sitting him for a while, at least maybe Miami or after."

Since a five-game stretch of averaging 21.6 points and 75 percent shooting, Garnett is averaging 13.9 points and 51 percent shooting in his past eight. And he also sat out the Dec. 22 win over Indiana with a thigh bruise.

"I just don't want to go down that road. It's early in the season. We got tonight, and we got two days and then we got three days after that," Rivers said. "To me, if you're going to rest guys, this is the perfect time to do it. And again, I don't know if I’m going to do that yet. But right now, I can tell you that I’m leaning that way, heavy."

Also, Rajon Rondo participated in shootaround but is expected to play. But in case he doesn't, the Celtics recalled Lester Hudson from Maine of the NBDL. He joined the Celtics following shootaround.

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