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Celtics’ Irving out 3-6 weeks after knee operation

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By Agence France-Presse

Boston Celtics guard Kyrie Irving is expected to miss three to six weeks after a procedure to remove a wire in his surgically repaired left knee, the NBA team said Saturday.

With the first round of the playoffs set to start on April 14, a six-week absence would see the Celtics star sidelined well into the post-season.

The removal of the wire, originally placed to help repair a fractured patella Irving suffered while playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 2015 NBA Finals, should relieve the irritation that has led to pain in Irving’s knee.

The Celtics already have secured a playoff berth and are currently second in the Eastern Conference, 4 1/2 games behind the Toronto Raptors and six games ahead of the Cavaliers.

Irving, who celebrated his 26th birthday Friday, is averaging 24.4 points, 5.1 assists and 3.8 rebounds in 60 games this season.

Ranked 10th among league scorers, he missed a fifth straight game on Friday with the discomfort that he said began during a March 3 loss to the Houston Rockets.