Does Kristaps Porzingis’ nagging foot injury pose problems for the Celtics?

Kristaps Porzingis, Boston Celtics (Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)
Kristaps Porzingis, Boston Celtics (Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images) /

Recently acquired all-star center Kristaps Porzingis is expected to play a big role on the new-look Boston Celtics team. Unfortunately, he may not enter training camp next month at 100%. Porzingis, who has had a history of foot and leg issues, including missing more than a season and a half with an ACL tear, was just ruled out of the FIBA World Cup with plantar fasciitis.

Still, despite his injury history, he managed to stay mostly healthy last season with the Washington Wizards. Even with this latest setback, he could still help the Celtics next season, even if it’s a lingering issue.

Will plantar fasciitis’ affect Kristaps Porzingis’ play for the Celtics?

Plantar fasciitis is a nagging injury that causes inflammation in the heel of the foot and could cause Porzingis to miss games next season. Playing big minutes and playing back-to-backs might not have been something that he was going to do anyway with the Celtics, but it’s more unlikely now. Thus, it seems like a safe bet that he’ll be load-managed.

Fortunately, there are far worse foot injuries that a 7’3 big man can have, and while it may slow him down, it shouldn’t cause him to miss any significant time. With Boston making a big change by trading long-time Celtic Marcus Smart in a 3-team deal for Porzingis, the hope is that he can provide enough of a boost to make a difference after the team again came up short in the playoffs.

After a resurgent season with the Wizards, he may very well help Boston as a stretch five who can also protect the basket. His arrival also signals that the Celtics will be relying less on Al Horford, who is 37 and entering his 17th season in the NBA, as well as Robert Williams.

Williams has struggled to stay healthy, which, along with Horford’s age, led Boston to make the move to add Porzingis and boost their frontcourt. Combined, they form a rock-solid frontcourt that, while not the most durable, has enough versatility that coach Joe Mazula can play any two of the three at one time.

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Whether Porzingis can help the Celtics win it all remains to be seen. But while plantar fasciitis will likely lead to his missing games due to rest, he should be mostly healthy when the regular season begins in October.