There's a cloud of uncertainty looming over a season of sky-high expectations for the Boston Celtics.
The status of leading scorer Isaiah Thomas's injured hip remains an area of concern with less than one month until training camp. His status won't be fully clear until he returns to Boston for a medical examination.
"We still don't know," Celtics coach Brad Stevens said on "The Vertical Podcast" with Chris Mannix. "He has another follow up and another scan in the early part of September when he arrives back here out east. From there we will know an exact timeline.
"It's been a lot of appropriate rest, a lot of rehab, there have been some good strides here certainly in the last month and few weeks. But we're not going to know that until after that early September time frame."
Stevens' diagnosis stands in stark contrast to that of Thomas, who declared earlier in August that he felt great and predicted he would be ready for training camp. Thomas also admitted the recovery had been slow, but said he was making great progress.
The point guard sustained a hip injury in mid-March, but chose to play through it. He labored during a painful postseason push before eventually succumbing for good during the Eastern Conference finals.
Boston based its entire game plan last season around Thomas as the team's primary creator. He was brilliant in both scoring and distributing en route to a career year, and was especially effective in fourth quarters.
The Celtics, however, will look to introduce a new dynamic this season. Having dramatically restructured their roster this offseason around the acquisition of Gordon Hayward, the team will need everyone healthy to establish familiarity and a new hierarchy in training camp.
That being said, the Celtics won't rush Thomas into anything, as his long-term health is their top priority.
"We want what's best for Isaiah," Steven said. "We want to make sure that when he is ready to roll - which is hopefully sooner rather than later - that he is ready to roll at his highest level and for the longest possible time. That's a lot more important to me than anything else."
Thomas averaged 28.9 points and 5.9 assists last season, which earned him All-NBA second-team honors.