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BOSTON (CBS) – The Boston Celtics have already had to deal with one player suffering from a heart ailment this season, so having a second player deal with something similar is what Doc Rivers called “scary.”
Forward Chris Wilcox is out indefinitely for the C’s, and will have additional tests performed sometime this week on his heart after a cardiac test raised a red flag earlier this week. It’s feared that Wilcox’s issue could be related to the aorta, similar to what forward Jeff Green was diagnosed with earlier this season.
“It’s not a great place. It’s scary. It really is. The chances of having one of these in a year is pretty minute,” Rivers said prior to Boston’s 97-94 loss to the Lakers on Sunday. “The chances of having two is like, impossible. There’s a chance that may happen. We just have to wait and see.”
Green’s season ended before it began when the 25-year-old forward was diagnosed with an aortic aneurysm this preseason. He underwent surgery in January, and right now, the Celtics are hoping for the best when it comes to Wilcox.
“There’s not much I can say. They have a bunch of tests to run and it’s what it is,” Rivers said
“I’d rather find it than not,” he said. “At the end of the day we’re lucky and that’s what I told our team: That we’re very lucky that this happened and not unlucky. I think that’s the way you have to look at it and that’s how we’re looking at it.”
There is no timetable for Wilcox, and it could take up to a week for the team to hear the results from the additional testing.
Wilcox’s absence leaves the Celtics with a big hole in the middle of the floor. Jermaine O’Neal is not expected to return from a wrist injury, leaving Boston with Kevin Garnett as their center and Brandon Bass at the power forward position. Rivers relied heavily on Bass in Sunday’s loss in LA, playing the forward 43 minutes, the most by any Celtic.
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After Garnett and Bass, the Celtics only have two true big men in rookies Greg Stiemsma and JaJuan Johnson. Stiemsma played 14 minutes against the Lakers, while Johnson did not get off the bench.
With Thursday’s trade deadline looming, the Celtics will be in the market for another big body down low, but it’s unlikely they would pull off any big moves. It’s more likely they would try the bargain bin, looking for someone in the NBA D-League rather than make a trade.