Celtics players will miss teammate Jeff Green, but are happy his heart ailment was detected.WALTHAM, Mass -- Celtics players were disappointed with the weekend news that teammate Jeff Green will miss the 2011-12 season after an aortic aneurysm was discovered during his preseason physical. But players were happy the discovery prevented a potentially more catastrophic event.
“I spoke to him,” backup guard Keyon Dooling said of Green, who, with successful surgery next month, is expected to make a full recovery and possibly play again during the 2012-13 season. “I mean, I was actually happy with the news -- happy in the sense that we caught it early enough and there wasn’t any tragedy, especially with this organization. So it’s good for Jeff to take care of his health. At the end of the day, this is our career. It’s a very important part of our life, but not more important than our health. We have great doctors here that found whatever the problem was [and] I heard that it will be fixed. And so it’ll be a year for him to have some life experience and hopefully come back and be better.”
Forward Chris Wilcox echoed Dooling's sentiment, saying that he’s just glad doctors found Green’s ailment before it was too late.
“It’s tough, man,” Wilcox said. “You don’t want nobody to go through a situation like that. But I think [in this case] it was for the better. When you got guys like [those on this team] to surround you, we’ve gotta be there for him and for support. With Jeff, he’s a strong guy, he already knows what [his ailment is], and at the end of the day we’re gonna be there for him regardless. All we can do is just send our prayers out.”
Marquis Daniels -- who last year underwent invasive surgery to relieve the effects of spinal stenosis, a lifelong condition, and has called his own comeback “a blessing” -- said the key for Green, and for his Celtics teammates, is to remain positive throughout what is sure to be an exhausting recovery process.
“[Green] should just try to surround himself with a great group of guys and stay positive,” Daniels said. “Whether it’s his family members or us here at the practice facility, we just have to stay positive throughout this whole situation. It’s going to be trying times for him but he’s a strong guy and as long as he has some positive people around him he’ll be OK.”