Celtics center Kristaps Porziņģis to have surgery after ‘rare’ leg injury, NBA Finals win

The Celtics closed out their series with the Dallas Mavericks on Monday night to pick up their first championship in 16 years

After a “rare” injury kept him out of two games in Boston's NBA Finals run, Celtics center Kristaps Porziņģis is headed for surgery.

Porziņģis returned to the court on Monday night to help the Celtics beat the Dallas Mavericks 106-88 in Game 5 of the NBA Finals, which earned them their first championship since 2008 and the franchise’s 18th overall. He told ESPN after the win that he’ll undergo surgery in the near future, and that he’ll spend a “few months” recovering. That should leave plenty of time for Porziņģis to be ready for the start of next season.

Porziņģis went down with a posterior tibialis dislocation in his left leg after an awkward collision with Mavericks center Dereck Lively II as they were boxing out during a free throw in Game 2 of the series.

Porziņģis struggled limping up the court after the collision, and he was pulled from the game early. The team described the injury, which was separate from the calf injury that kept him out of the previous two rounds of the playoffs, as “rare.”

Porziņģis came off the bench Monday in the 18-point win at TD Garden. He had five points and one rebound in 16 minutes.

Kristaps Porzingis missed two games in the NBA Finals with a rare leg injury he sustained in Game 2.
Kristaps Porzingis missed two games in the NBA Finals with a rare leg injury he sustained in Game 2. (Danielle Parhizkaran/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

"I think something could have happened, for sure, especially compensating now on the other leg now, which I just came back from,” Porziņģis said after the win when asked by ESPN if he was worried about reinjuring his leg in the game. “There was definitely some added risk, but I didn’t care. I was like, ‘I want to give everything I can and then fix it after if I need to.’”

Now, Porziņģis can do just that.

Porziņģis averaged 20.1 points and 7.2 rebounds per game this season with the Celtics, who acquired the Latvian star in a three-way deal with the Washington Wizards last summer. The 28-year-old will enter the first year of a two-year, $60 million deal with the franchise this fall.

Though his summer and impending celebration after winning the championship may be a bit dampened with his upcoming surgery, Porziņģis isn’t bothered by that one bit. After all, he’s got his ring.

“I don’t care,” Porziņģis said. “I will fix it. This is the most important, and after my injury healing and all that, it’s totally worth it.”