Smith better but still questionable for Game 3

Associated Press Modified: May 3, 2012 at 9:46 pm •  Published: May 3, 2012
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"If it feels good, I'm going to go," he said. "But I don't want to put that much pressure on me. I understand how important this series is, but it's more than one game. I don't want to go out too early and risk getting injured more than I am. I'm going to take it day by day. Hopefully it feels good (Friday) and I'll be able to lace 'em up."

Smith had 22 points and 18 rebounds in Atlanta's Game 1 victory, and he followed with another double-double in the second contest (16 points, 12 rebounds). But Smith hurt his knee trying to box out Kevin Garnett for a rebound, forcing him to the locker room with just over 4 minutes remaining.

The Hawks were trailing by only two when Smith left. Boston pulled away after that for an 87-80 victory.

"I was more frustrated than anything," Smith said. "I tried to give it a go, but I just couldn't go. Knowing the importance of the game, that was the most frustrating part."

Pachulia, meanwhile, said he's yet to be cleared by the doctors to do any running or jumping. He's eager to get back on the court, but seems resigned to missing at least the first round.

He can only hope the Hawks' season will still be going when his foot heals.

"It's very frustrating for me," the rugged center said. "I always had fun in the playoffs every single time. It's a special moment of the year."

___

Follow Paul Newberry on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pnewberry1963



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