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No Surgery Needed For Celtics Jae Crowder

BOSTON (CBS) -- The season may be over for Jae Crowder and the Boston Celtics, but the good news is the forward's offseason will not include surgery.

Crowder, who left Sunday's Game 4 in the third quarter after a nasty foul by Cleveland's J.R. Smith, was diagnosed with a left ACL sprain on Monday after meeting with team doctors.

The prognosis for Crowder is just rest and rehabilitation, according to The Boston Herald's Mark Murphy.

The injury occurred as Crowder and Smith battled for a rebound early in the third quarter. Smith backhanded Crowder in the face, causing the C's forward to fall and twist his left knee. He had to be helped off the floor and did not return to the game. Smith was hit with a flagrant-2 foul on the play and is likely facing a suspension from the league.

That was the second incident in Sunday's game that ended with Crowder hitting the deck. He was also on the receiving end of a hard foul by Kendrick Perkins earlier in the third quarter.

Crowder started Game 4 for Boston after coming off the bench in each of the first three games of the series. He was tasked with guarding LeBron James throughout the series, and did admirably against arguably the best player on the planet. The third-year forward, who Boston acquired from Dallas in the Rajon Rondo trade, averaged 10.8 points, five rebounds and two assists per game during the playoffs.

In 57 regular season games, including 17 starts, Crowder averaged a career-high 9.5 points and 4.6 rebounds per game for Boston.

Crowder will be a restricted free agent this offseason, but after fitting in so well with Brad Stevens' system, will likely be part of the Celtics' future.

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