Joe Mazzulla shares update on Porzingis’ injury timeline

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How long should the Boston Celtics expect to be without Kristaps Porzingis?

That question has dominated conversation over the past 36 hours after the Celtics big man suffered a right calf strain in the second quarter of Boston’s Game 4 win over the Miami Heat on Monday.

The Celtics announced Porzingis will miss Wednesday’s Game 5 in Boston, and according to head coach Joe Mazzulla, the big man also would miss Games 6 and 7 if the series makes it that far. Mazzulla confirmed Wednesday that Porzingis will be sidelined for at least a week.

“I don’t know the specifics of it; they use a lot of fancy words. But I do know it will be re-evaluated next week,” Mazzulla said Wednesday of Porzingis’ injury during his weekly interview with 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Zolak & Bertrand radio show. “We’ll see how he responds to the treatment and how much better he gets here in the first week. That’s kind of the goal is to rehab it like crazy over the next week and see where we’re at from there.”

The Athletic’s Shams Charania also provided more clarity on Porzingis’ recovery timeline Wednesday morning, noting that Porzingis’ injury is being treated like a “week-to-week” issue.

“It could be one to two weeks for Kristaps Porzingis; it could be even longer than that based on his rehab,” Charania said on FanDuel TV’s Run It Back show.

Charania added that Porzingis’ injury appears similar to what Giannis Antetokounmpo suffered in an April 9 game against the Celtics, and the Bucks star has missed the last three weeks of action, although there’s some optimism he could return for Milwaukee’s Game 6 against the Indiana Pacers on Thursday night.

If the C’s beat the Heat on Wednesday to advance to the second round, that series against the winner of Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Orlando Magic would start this Sunday, May 5, or Tuesday, May 7, depending on whether Cavs-Magic goes six or seven games.

Boston’s Round 2 series could last until May 19 if it goes seven games, with the Eastern Conference Finals expected to start on May 21 (or as early as May 19 if the series ends in fewer than seven games).

May 21 would be just under three weeks from Wednesday. So, in a best-case scenario, the Celtics could have Porzingis back for the East Finals if they make it that far. But at the moment, it seems unlikely he’d play in the team’s second-round series, which would put the pressure on frontcourt depth pieces such as Luke Kornet, Xavier Tillman and Neemias Queta to step up in his absence.

Check out the video player above for Mazzulla’s full comments about Porzingis.

The Celtics officially ruled Kristaps Porzingis out of Game 5 vs. Miami with a right soleus strain. How would a long-term absence for Porzingis impact the C’s shot at a championship?

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