Doc Rivers and Paul Pierce alike promise the latter will make his talismanic presence felt tonight when the Celtics collide with the Lakers in Game 2 of the NBA Finals, but ever cognizant of Pierce’s knee woes in Game 1,’s Kelly Dwyer rightfully asks, “what hasn’t he had an MRI?”

It doesn’t make things worse, it’s quite easy to accomplish once the swelling of a major tear goes down (Pierce has copped to some swelling, but not a lot, so he should be more than available for the procedure), and would seem to go part and parcel with, you know, A MAJOR NBA STAR SEEING HIS KNEE BUCKLE ON HIM WHILST ON NATIONAL NETWORK TV IN PRIME TIME.

I’m not seeing black helicopters, I promise. Had Pierce torn an ACL, the swelling would be more than he could capably worm out of bed with on Friday morning. What I wonder is if Pierce refused an MRI based off of some fear that the scan – which he has no doubt taken probably a half-dozen times in his NBA career – would reveal a worst-case scenario situation. And that he didn’t want to hear the bad news, however unlikely it may be.

It’s still an odd thing to read, that a few days after his famous fall down, that the Celtics’ eight-figure asset has yet to have an MRI. It just makes next to no sense, especially considering how unobtrusive the procedure is, and how many good things can come of it. The Boston medical staff has to know that a major ligament tear isn’t likely, so why not explore further?