What Jaylen Brown’s Injury Means for Celtics Playoff Hopes

Matthew Willar '22, Contributing Writer

It’s not a good day for Celtics fans, as Jaylen Brown has been ruled out for the remainder of the NBA season.

On Monday, May 10, the Celtics announced that Brown had been diagnosed with a torn scapholunate ligament in his left wrist. Brown had missed the past three games after colliding with teammate Jayson Tatum during the Celtics 129-119 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on May 2. Brown’s injury is making the Celtics playoff hopes smaller and smaller.

Jaylen Brown has been averaging a career high this season of 24.7 points per game off 48.4% shooting. He was also named an all-star for the first time this season. Brown’s injury is not the ending to the season he was expecting and hoping for.

The Celtics are currently sitting in the 7th seed in the Eastern Conference. This season, due to COVID-19 has made the NBA enforce in strict restrictions. There will be a play-in tournament. Unlike in previous years where the top eight teams in each conference make the playoffs, this season, the teams seeded 7 through 10 will face off to secure the final two spots in the playoffs for each conference.

The Celtics are currently two games behind the Miami Heat, which puts them in the play-in tournament, so if they stay in this position they will face the Charlotte Hornets in the play-in tournament. If they win that game, they will secure the 7th seed in the Eastern Conference. There is still time for the Celtics to surpass the Miami Heat, but with Brown’s injury and less games remaining, it is looking as if the Celtics are going to be in the play-in tournament.

With already small hopes for the Celtics this season, Brown’s injury doesn’t help. If the Celtics want to make a run in the playoffs, they need starting point guard Kemba Walker to play at the same level he played at last season. The Celtics could also use help from Robert Williams, Evan Founrier, and Payton Pritchard, who if healthy can play at a high caliber level.

The Celtics have four games remaining in the regular season, and those games will determine where the Celtics place in the standings. However, with Brown’s injury, it isn’t looking like the Celtics are going to move up to a higher seed.