The Boston Celtics lost a high-scoring affair with the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday evening, 129-119. As a result they dropped down to seventh place in the Eastern Conference standings, which for the time being puts them in the play-in tournament. But the result and the seeding race is the last thing on anyone's mind in Boston.
Late in the fourth quarter, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown both hobbled to the locker room after an awkward collision along the sideline. Neither returned to the game, though there was less than a minute to play when they got injured so it's impossible to say if they could have come back with more time.
Down by seven, the Celtics needed to force a turnover to have any hope of getting back in the game. As the Trail Blazers inbounded the ball to Norman Powell, Brown came flying in to try and get a deflection, while Tatum arrived for a trap on the sideline. Unfortunately they collided and got their legs tangled up in the process.
Both of them appeared to roll their ankles and stayed down on the floor for a brief period. When they were able to get up they made their way straight to the locker room. Brown appeared to get the worst of it, and was spotted leaning on his teammates for support in the tunnel.
It's still too early know how serious either injury is, though Celtics head coach Brad Stevens said neither of them had swelling when he saw them immediately after the game. Obviously that is subject to change, but Tatum's postgame quotes provided more positive news -- at least on his end.
"We just collided and I guess he stepped on my foot and he fell on my leg," Tatum said. "But (I) should be all right. We'll see after tomorrow. I was able to walk off the court by myself, so that's a good sign. I hope (Jaylen's) all right."
Brown, who did not speak to the media, was questionable to even play on Sunday due to a sprained right ankle, and needed to pass some tests during a pre-game warm up to be cleared. The ankle he hurt in the incident with Tatum was the same one that was already banged up.