BOSTON (CBS) — The Celtics have made it sound like Robert Williams will not be playing in Game 1 against the Nets on Saturday night. Shams Charania is saying otherwise.

The Athletic and Stadium insider said Friday afternoon that sources are telling him that Williams is expected to play when the Celtics and the Nets tip off their first-round series in Brooklyn this weekend.

On Thursday, Celtics head coach Brad Stevens said that Williams wasn’t moving around very well, and his only update on the Boston center on Friday was that he did not practice. The team later tweeted out that Williams’ status for Game 1 was “up in the air.”

Those updates certainly didn’t sound promising, but maybe the two days of rest did Williams well as Game 1 inches closer.

Williams has been dealing with turf toe for the last couple of weeks, missing five of Boston’s final six regular season games. He returned to the starting lineup for Tuesday night’s play-in win over the Washington Wizards, but he aggravated the injury on a bad fall in the second quarter when he collided with Jayson Tatum while going for a block. Williams did return for the start of the third quarter, but he lasted just over a minute before being forced out of the game with the ailment.

Having Williams back would certainly help the Celtics in a series where they’ll need all the help they can get. The two-seeded Nets are heavily favored over a Boston team that will be without Jaylen Brown, who is out after undergoing wrist surgery last week. Williams’ presence probably won’t make a major difference, but at least having the energetic and exciting big man back would be something that Celtics fans could get excited about for a few games.

 

CBSBoston.com Staff