After earning a trip to the NBA Finals last season, the Boston Celtics remained aggressive in acquiring talent this offseason, with sharpshooting veteran forward Danilo Gallinari among those at the forefront. Early returns on that investment will have to wait, as ESPN Senior Insider Adrian Wojnarowski confirmed today that Gallinari suffered a torn left ACL.
Gallinari, who last year extended his streak to eight consecutive seasons of double-digit scoring, suffered this same injury to that very knee in 2013-14. In Tim Bontemps’ report on ESPN, he noted that Gallinari doesn’t intend to allow this injury to keep him sidelined for the entirety of this season; the 34-year-old is targeting a late-season return in 2022-23.
From that article, Gallinari released this statement:
“This has been a tough week for me as I have learned the extent of my injury,” Gallinari wrote in a social media post. “This game means everything to me and not being able to be on the court with my Celtics teammates hurts. I plan to give everything I can to the Celtics organization and my teammates as we hunt for a title.”
Despite playing for some of this decade’s more talented teams, Gallinari remains in search of an elusive championship. Two seasons ago, as a member of the Atlanta Hawks, he came within two games of the NBA Finals.
The injury is said to have been non-contact, and that it occurred in FIBA World Cup qualifying game against Georgia, as Gallinari was receiving a bounce pass in the lane. The Celtics signed him to a two-year, $13 million contract, which he hopes to make good on upon his return.