Life is indeed cruel. Just as Celtics fans were starting to feel good about the rest of the season without Rondo, they get another blow that may be even tougher to take. Jared Sullinger will undergo back surgery and will miss the rest of the season. Last year it was Jeff Green and Chris Wilcox with heart surgery and this season it's Rondo's knee and Sully's back.
Sully had just moved into the starting lineup and was playing great. He had played through some pain for the past couple of weeks and then had to leave Wednesday night's game against Sacramento in the first quarter. He missed the Celtics' practice on Thursday and Doc said he didn't think it was serious. Now, it appears that the back pain had worsened and surgery is needed. But then again, the Celtics knew it was a possibility when they drafted him. From ESPN before the draft:
Sullinger, who is projected to be a lottery pick in the draft on June 28, underwent a series of medical tests at the draft combine a week ago. A number of NBA team doctors have reviewed the information from the NBA and have told their front office staff that Sullinger's back issues could shorten his NBA career, and some have advised their teams not to draft him in the first round.
I'm very disappointed that Sully won't get to continue to play this season. He has been a breath of fresh air for the Celtics this season. He was fun to watch. We haven't had anyone who rebounds and bangs inside like him for a long time. I'm still glad the Celtics took him, even with the red flags and now the surgery. He's a player and I'm hoping that the surgery will fix the problem and he'll come back next year and pick up right where he left off and have a long and productive career.
The thoughts and prayers of Celtics nation are with both Sully and Rondo for successful surgery and a quick recovery.