NBA

Milicic likely leaving Celts, NBA for family issue

11/20 1:20 PM

Darko Milicic is likely leaving the team to be with his ailing mother.

WALTHAM -- Celtics coach Doc Rivers said it's likely that reserve center Darko Milicic will leave the team for the remainder of the season in order to be with his ill mother in Serbia.

"Most likely, yeah," Rivers said when asked if Milicic was done.

"Stuff with his family has been going on for a while. We've talked about it three or four times. You know, it's probably 50-50, but once you get the one side working, it's always going to win out."

Milicic hasn't played since the Celtics' home opener Nov. 2 -- his only appearance of the regular season -- and didn't travel with the team last weekend for Sunday's game against the Detroit Pistons.

Rivers said the team has known about Milicic's family issues for some time, but that he hadn't thought it would result in Milicic leaving the team.

"No, no. We were hoping not," Rivers said. "But his mom gets sick, he's not playing, the whole sickness, it happens. I didn't fight it much. I told him he's got to do what he thinks is right, and I'm going to support him one way or the other. But it's been going on for a little bit now.

"You could see a change when he found out his mom wasn't doing well. There's no doubt about that," Rivers added.

Rivers said the team won't rush to fill Milicic's roster spot.

"No rush at all," Rivers said. "We're going to look around, but I can tell you we're in no rush."

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