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12/30/2011 - 7:46pm
Pierce to start in his season debut

Doc Rivers confirmed about an hour before Friday's home opener that Paul Pierce would make his season debut in the home opener against the Pistons Friday night at TD Garden. The head coach cautioned that he would monitor Pierce's situation closely and wouldn't rule out the possiblity of significantly limiting Pierce's playing time.

Pierce missed the two preseason games and the first three games of the regular season - all losses - with a bruised right heel. That injury - sustained days before the opening of the shortened training camp - also limited his practice time in the preseason to mainly shooting on the side and watching from the sidelines. He took part in just one practice with the team. The Celtics have dropped all three games with Pierce in a suit on the bench.

"We could be 3-0, I would be playing Paul tonight," Rivers said. "We could be 0-3 and we would play Paul tonight.

"I don’t know what percentage he...

12/30/2011 - 5:58pm
Report: Brady has 'sprained left shoulder'

FOXBORO -- If Tom Brady plays this Sunday, it will be with a sprained left shoulder, according to a tweet from the NFL Network's Albert Breer late Friday afternoon. Breer, quoting a source with direct knowledge of the injury, said the injury to the shoulder sustained in the Christmas Eve win over the Dolphins is "not an instability problem," indicating Brady would be able to play with the injury. 

Breer added that the source indicated that moving forward, it will simply be a matter of "pain control" for Brady and it shouldn't limit him from playing. 

Brady was limited again in practice on Friday with a left shoulder issue. He was one of 17 Patriots listed as limited but the only one listed as "probable" on the official participation report, indicating the team views him as a "virtual certainty to be available for normal duty."

It has been a...

12/30/2011 - 5:48pm
Ainge on Big Show: Celtics 'out of sync'
By: DJ Bean

Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge joined The Big Show Friday, expressing disappointment in the team's 0-3 start to the season, but saying he ultimately isn't overly concerned. 

Forward Paul Pierce has yet to play this season due to a bone bruise on his right heel, but Ainge said he might be available Friday night against the Pistons.

"Paul is doing better this morning," Ainge said. "I think it will be a game-time decision with the trainer and just sort of how he feels pre-game. It's looking better, and we're very encouraged that he's going to be back soon."

Ainge said he is not worried the injury could nag Pierce throughout the season.

"I'm not worried that it's going to linger now," he said. "I mean, I think that had he started to play when he really wanted to play, which is opening night, I was worried about it then, but the rest has been beneficial for Paul. Even though...

12/30/2011 - 5:41pm
Brady 'probable', Mankins, Vollmer out

FOXBORO -- Tom Brady was again limited at practice on Friday with a left shoulder injury but is officially listed by the team on its injury report as "probable" for the regular season finale Sunday against the Bills at Gillette Stadium. Probable is clarified on the NFL participation report as "virtual certainty the player will be available for normal duty." The only two players to miss practice all week, Logan Mankins (left knee) and Sebastian Vollmer (right foot/back) were the only two players ruled out. The team listed 16 others as questionable with various injuries. Here is Friday's complete report:

Did Not Practice
G Logan Mankins (knee) OUT 
OT Sebastian Vollmer (back/foot) OUT

Limited Participation
QB Tom Brady (left shoulder) Probable
CB Kyle Arrington (foot) Questionable
WR Deion Branch (groin) Questionable
S Patrick Chung (foot)...

12/30/2011 - 4:33pm
Light on Big Show: Hoping to play Sunday
By: DJ Bean

Patriots tackle Matt Light joined The Big Show Friday, saying that he hopes to play Sunday's regular-season finale after missing last Saturday's game with an ankle injury.

"Like always, I'm going out there and doing everything I can to get and be able to be on the field," Light said. "We'll see how it goes. "It's always difficulty when you're rehabbing something or trying to come back from something, but we've had a good week this week, and I'm pretty excited about this weekend."

Light did not specify when he suffered the injury, but said that the decision was made on game-day that he was not able to play.

"[I] just wasn't able to dial it up on Saturday, unfortunately," he said. "You hate being in those positions and having to make that call, but it's all about moving on and getting onto this Buffalo game." 

Last weekend, the Bills, who had lost seven straight games, blew out the...

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