WALTHAM --  In a sign that he is close to returning to game action, Kevin Garnett took part in contact practice with the Celtics on Thursday for the first time since straining his right calf against Detroit on Dec. 29. Coach Doc Rivers said that Garnett participated in a little more than half the practice, going through plays and running up and down the court but ruled him out of Friday's home game against Charlotte. 


Celtics big man Jermaine O'Neal checked in with the Dale & Holley show Thursday as part of the show's Celtic of the Week interview series.


Rajon Rondo and Kevin Garnett have been passed by Derrick Rose and Amar'e Stoudemire, respectively, in the latest round of All-Star voting numbers released by the league. Rondo and Garnett have had slim leads over their conuterparts since the returns started coming in, but Rose and Stoudemire have been making steady gains each week.


Celtics coach Doc Rivers made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Thursday morning, following Wednesday's night's 119-95 rout of the Kings.


The news Wednesday from the Celtics, other than their 119-95 blowout win over the Kings (click here for a full recap), was that Kevin Garnett would probably miss another gam



Doc Rivers sounded a humble tone when told after the game that the 119-95 win over the Kings moved him past K.C. Jones on the Celtics' all-time list for regular-season coaching wins with 309. 


Paul Pierce scored 15 of his game-high 25 points in the first quarter while Ray Allen had a pair of 3-pointers in the midst of a big run to open the third quarter as the Celtics ran away from the Kings, 119-95, Wednesday night at TD Garden. Nate Robinson was big off the bench, going 4-for-5 from 3-point range and finishing with 16, one of four bench players in double figures. 


The original prognosis for Kevin Garnett's return from a strained calf was two weeks. Now it appears that it will take a little longer. Garnett won't play tonight against the Kings, as expected, but Doc Rivers sounded pessimistic about whether Garnett would be ready to go Friday against the Bobcats. That puts Monday's game with the Magic as the new target date.


According to A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com (via twitter), coach Doc Rivers said "there has been no discussion" by the Celtics about bringing back forward Rasheed Wallace.


Wallace spent the 2009-10 season with the Celtics, averaging 9.0 points and 4.1 rebounds a night during the regular season. He retired after his team's seven-game loss to the Lakers in the NBA Finals.


WALTHAM -- Celtics forward Kevin Garnett did not take part in his team's practice on Tuesday, and it is unlikely that he will play on Wednesday when the Celtics are scheduled to host Sacramento.


"I doubt he plays. There's a chance but I doubt it," said Celtics coach Doc Rivers, who called Garnett day-to-day.