WALTHAM — Paul Pierce  spoke on Thursday for the first time since being diagnosed with a left mid-foot sprain that forced him to miss Wednesday night’s game against Miami and will likely keep him out of action against New Jersey on Friday night.
But the All-Star forward said he has reason to think he might be back by Sunday when the team takes on the Orlando Magic  at TD Garden.
‘I can walk on it,” Pierce said. “It’s just a basic mid-foot sprain. It’s not the end of the world. I’ve had worse injuries, to tell you the truth. And the good thing about it is I didn’t have to go into a boot. I’m still walking around on it. It’s just about the pain going away. It’s a sprain but it’s not the worst sprain I’ve ever had.’
Pierce said he definitely plans on taking part in the All-Star 3-point shooting contest and is hopeful for the All-Star Game itself on Feb. 14 at Cowboys Stadium.
[Click here  to hear a humble Pierce explain why he’s planning on going ahead with the All-Star 3-point contest.]
‘The foot is getting better every day,” Pierce added. “I’m just doing the necessary treatments to get back on the court as soon as possible. Going by how it feels. The good thing about it over the last couple of days it’s gotten better every day so I’m just taking it a day at a time until I know it’s right.
‘It’s tough but I know at this point in my career and understanding my body, I know the most important thing for me right now is just to get healthy. As a younger player I might have pushed it too much and who knows if I might have made the injury even worse. Right now at this age I have to take care of my body and do what’s right and right now the right thing is to get rest.’
Perhaps what was most telling about Pierce’s state of mind was how he reminded everyone on Thursday that he knew he didn’t think his left foot was broken and how the NBA.com report was a bit premature, to say the least.
‘I know my body better than these doctors to tell you the truth,” Pierce said. “Like I told you all after the game on Monday, I thought it was sprain in the foot. The doctors are going to do their necessary tests that they have to do with the x-rays and MRIs. But I told them all along what it was and at the end of the day, that’s what it came out to be. I don’t how it got started I had a broken foot or anything. But I guess it was good drama for half a day.
“I think that’s definitely a possibility with the progress I’m making. Hopefully, I can come back in the next few days but I’m just going to take it one day at a time.
‘I can walk on it. It’s just a basic mid-foot sprain. It’s not the end of the world. I’ve had worse injuries, to tell you the truth. And the good thing about it is I didn’t have to go into a boot. I’m still walking around on it. It’s just about the pain going away. It’s a sprain but it’s not the worst sprain I’ve ever had.’
Still, Pierce realizes he and the Celtics  are very fortunate that Caron Butler didn’t do more serious damage when he landed on Pierce’s leg on Monday night.
‘I think doing a good job of being lucky and taking care of my body,” Pierce added. “Injuries can happen to anybody and I’m no exception from it. It can happen to the best athletes in the world. It’s about being lucky and taking care of your body. I think the key to this injury is that I gave way to the fall because it could have been a whole lot worse. Once you saw Caron fall on me, my weight gave in and I kind of fell with the way my foot turned. It made the turn not as bad as it could have been.”