Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo missed Thursday night’s game against the Brooklyn Nets because of a sprained ankle. Leandro Barbosa started in his place.
Coach Doc Rivers said he didn’t know Rondo’s condition.
“I pretty much assumed he wasn’t going to play because of the way he was walking this morning,” Rivers said. “We just did our little walkthrough in the hotel with L.B. (Barbosa) and we’ll try to play that way.”
Rivers said Rondo would play if he’s ready when the Celtics play next. If not, the team will “just keep moving.”
Rondo was injured during Wednesday’s 98-93 win against the Utah Jazz. His status is listed as day to day.
The 26-year-old landed awkwardly on his right ankle after a baseline drive with 4:55 left in the third quarter. Rondo missed a layup and then hopped across the court to the front row before limping his way back to the bench. He later returned to the locker room with trainer Ed Lacerte.
So far this season, Rondo is averaging 14.3 points and 12.6 assists. Barbosa is averaging 5.9 points and 1.6 assists. Rondo, however, has been a member of the Celtics since 2006, while Barbosa just signed a one-year contract with the team on October 18.
Prior to playing for the Celtics, Barbosa had been traded by the Toronto Raptors to the Indiana Pacers for a future second-round draft pick on March 15, 2012.
Rivers said of Barbosa, “He can score, bottom line. [But] right now, he can’t start our offense because he doesn’t know our offense. But right now, we’ll run pick and rolls, and hell, last night, I just yelled, ‘Post Kevin [Garnett.]”
Team captain Paul Pierce said, “That happens throughout the course of the season, guys get hurt, other guys are going to step up. That’s why we brought in the depth that we have this year, and it showed tonight.”
Barbosa scored 16 points in 23 minutes against the Jazz after Rondo left the game.