Celtics expect Isaiah Thomas to play in Game 2 vs. Bulls

Chicago Bulls Rajon Rondo goes up to shoot in front of Boston Celtics Kelly Olynyk during the first quarter of a first-round NBA playoff basketball game Sunday

Thomas nearly lifted the Eastern Conference top seeds to victory with two late baskets in their best-of-seven first-round series opener against the Bulls, but the visitors survived to draw first blood, 106-102.

Isaiah Thomas intends to play in Game 2 against Chicago tomorrow night, and then fly to Seattle for a memorial service honoring his late sister, Chyna, who died in a auto crash early Saturday morning.

James did not send his sympathies to Thomas and his family via social media because of the Cleveland Cavaliers star's playoff-imposed blackout, according to the Akron Beacon Journal.

Stevens said memorial services for Thomas' sister had not been finalized but suggested the entire team would make an effort to attend.

Thomas was playing with a heavy heart, and there was some doubt whether he even would play after his younger sister, Chyna, was killed in a one-car crash Saturday morning in Washington. No funeral date is set, and Stevens says the Celtics organization hopes to attend.

Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert will be sidelined for Game 2 of their Western Conference first-round playoff series against the host Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday night, the Salt Lake Tribune reported.

Stay on topic - This helps keep the thread focused on the discussion at hand. "We knew their stuff, just like they knew ours. Obviously our world is kind of revolved around basketball, but like I said, who cares about basketball when something like that happens?" In Game 2, I expect a better shooting and rebounding, and other guys stepping up from the Celtics.

Chyna Thomas, 22, died in a single-car accident in Washington State before dawn on Saturday.

"He was playing for his sister, playing for his family - we appreciate that as team-mates", said Celtics guard Avery Bradley, who was seen comforting Thomas during the pre-game shootaround.

"We're never going to make excuses, but this is hard", Horford said.

"We talked a little bit [Saturday] night and then again today about as he goes through it and if he feels like he needs to not, then whatever he wants", Stevens said.

Several messages were written on Thomas' shoes Sunday, including "Chyna", "RIP Lil Sis" and "I love you". He looked toward the rafters just before the tip-off. "The days won't get easier for him, but he somehow plays like that".

No matter the decision, whether it be to stay and play or fly home to be with family, the Boston Celtics and all of their fans will support Thomas; because together we are Boston strong!

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