Jae Crowder practiced yesterday. Initial returns were positive. The small forward could very well return to the starting lineup tonight.

While an innocuous hand signal doesn't necessarily mean Crowder's balky ankle won't flare up this morning, Ainge's comments sure are a positive sign for a Celtics team desperate to get back to their pre-All-Star rotation. Since the All-Star break, the Celtics have yet to play a game with both Kelly Olynyk and Jae Crowder in the lineup. The Celtics have compiled a 4-4 record without Crowder, with losses to the playoff bound Pacers, Raptors, Thunder, and Clippers. Though anxious to return, the Herald's Steve Bulpett reports he won't do so if he's not ready to play at a high level:

The determining factor for him returning is, Crowder said, "If I can really compete at a level I'm capable of competing at. I don't want to be a liability when I get back out there. I want to be as close to 100 percent as possible."

Celtics fans are hoping that Crowder is ready to return to action and go full throttle in Portland tonight.


Photo Credit Mark L Baer/USA Today Sports

Paul Colahan 3/31/2016 10:48:00 AM Edit
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