Celtics Move Garnett to Injured List


Celtics Move Garnett to Injured List

February 20, 1999

 PORTLAND, Ore. - The NBA-decreed roster cut-down day arrived yesterday with a lot of coaches looking for injuries waiting to happen. Rick Pitino found one, as did many of his colleagues. Pitino had two of the three injured list spots already taken with Pervis Ellison and Walter McCarty hors de combat. But a third player had to join them, and at yesterday morning's shootaround, the coach revealed that rookie Marlon Garnett had suffered a sprained right ankle. Garnett, doing what all good rookies do, will keep his mouth shut and wear nice clothes for at least the next five games. Ellison is probably out for the season after undergoing ankle surgery in November.

McCarty has what is known as "turf toe" and has been out since the Feb. 5 opener. "It's a tough injury to heal," Pitino said of McCarty's ailment. "It's a bruise under the toe, and it's not going to heal unless you get totally over it." McCarty said the injury is one of the strangest he's ever had. "I can't really put any pressure on it, so that makes it hard to do anything," he said. He began work on the treadmill yesterday and said he planned to return for the March 2 game at Cleveland. There undoubtedly were a few eyebrow raisers when teams submitted their final rosters to the league yesterday. The right ankle sprain must be contagious for rookies; Portland's Bonzi Wells also came down with one. Asked about the reports, league operations chief Rod Thorn chuckled and said, "Actually, in this season, it's probably a good thing to have a couple healthy or semihealthy players available so that teams can have practices."

 Homecoming is the point Kenny Anderson was back in his one-time haunt, and he is remembered fondly here by the Trail Blazers' public relations people. When he last passed through, he had just been traded by the Blazers after being at odds with coach Mike Dunleavy, whom he ripped. That's ancient history, Anderson said yesterday. "That wasn't me and I regret that I said it," Anderson said. "I'm looking forward, not backwards. When I was here, I thought I was going to be a Blazer for a long time. Now I'm looking to build a new home in Boston." . . . How's this for improvement: Andrew DeClercq, a career 60 percent free-throw shooter, entered last night's game 9 for 9 from the line. The ninth one ultimately settled Wednesday's triple-overtime game. "Andy Enfield has been helping me a lot with the free throws," DeClercq said, referring to the new Celtics assistant/shooting coach. "I just imagine that I'm in the gym at Brandeis and go through the same routine." . . . The Blazers have made one major personnel shift this season: Rasheed Wallace is coming off the bench. Wallace started 77 games last year, but his only start this season came when Arvydas Sabonis was given a breather.

Taking Wallace's place has been Walt Williams, who was Enfield's first client as a shot doctor. "He saw me working out in Washington and showed me some corrections," Williams said. "I was shooting it from the side, over my shoulder. Now I shoot it more in front of my head." While Williams's shooting percentage has not risen noticeably, he says opponents now treat him differently. "When I first came into the league, I was known as a slasher and guys stayed off me," he said. "Now, when I get the ball outside, there's someone right on me." . . . Pitino, Enfield, and several others took advantage of the early-afternoon down time and hit the Nike employee store in nearby Beaverton . . . Paul Pierce, who had 12 steals in the first two games of the trip, began the night as the NBA leader in thefts with three a game. The Celtics were ranked as No. 2 in scoring, just behind Sacramento, but next-to-last in points allowed, ahead of only Denver . . . Prior to the game, Carlos Rogers of the Blazers was engaged in a friendly discussion with a female reporter about locker room access. Rogers said he didn't understand why women were allowed in men's locker rooms but men weren't allowed in women's . . . The Celtics were to fly to Washington, D.C., after the game. They have practice time set aside for this evening at the MCI Center.

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