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Celtics sign center Ryan Hollins

Ryan Hollins most recently played for Cleveland. Sue Ogrocki/AP

MILWAUKEE - Ryan Hollins has agreed to contract terms and could join the Celtics for Friday night’s game at Philadelphia, coach Doc Rivers confirmed Thursday.

Hollins, a center, cleared waivers after being released by Cleveland and will join Boston as a restricted free agent.

‘‘We’ll do physicals in the morning, and if it fits, we’re going to have him fly out and meet us in Philly,’’ said Rivers.

Physical examinations are becoming far from routine with the Celtics. Exams revealed heart conditions with Jeff Green and Chris Wilcox. Green has missed the entire season after undergoing surgery and Wilcox, diagnosed earlier this month, has been declared out for the season.


The Celtics have also lost center Jermaine O’Neal (wrist) for the season. In the offseason, Hollins worked out with Celtics Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce.

‘‘They played with him all summer, and this summer was longer than most,’’ Rivers said. ‘‘They’ve been talking about him for a while.

‘‘He didn’t play in Cleveland for a reason, and I don’t know what that reason is, so we’re just hoping he can play for us.’’

Hollins, 27, listed at 6 feet 11 inches, 225 pounds, averaged 3.7 points and 2.3 rebounds in 15 minutes over 24 games this season. He started his career with Charlotte in 2006 and will be playing for his fifth NBA team.

Asked about his expectations for Hollins, Rivers said, ‘‘I don’t really know, honestly. I’ve watched him on tape, and tape doesn’t do much for you.

‘‘But he’s an athletic big. He can run the floor, he’s a shotblocker from the weak side. He does defend well in the schemes that we run—he can show and get back in coverage.

‘‘He has not rebounded, and that’s something we need him to do. So we’ll really stress rebounding with him.’’


Ray Allen said the change of scenery could benefit Hollins.

‘‘I haven’t seen much of him,’’ Allen said, ‘‘but I do know, based on what we have here, we can use more height. And, just from playing with him over the years, he’s a great shot-blocker.

‘‘It seems—I don’t know why, I’ll find out—he hasn’t played as much in his career. There’s an opportunity for him to play here. Being around guys like we have here, he has a chance to really shine and do something good here and really solidify himself.’’

Stiemsma hangs tough

Greg Stiemsma produced one of his most impressive performances since joining the Celtics this season. He played most of the second half with five fouls in relief of Garnett.

‘‘I knew[Rivers] was going to go with me until Kevin was ready to come back in,’’ Stiemsma said. ‘‘So I’mout there to foul and block shots, whatever I’ve got to do, I’m going to do.’’

Stiemsma was born in Randolph, a southern Wisconsin town of less than 2,000, an hour and a half drive from Milwaukee.

‘‘It feels good to play well and play well in front of kind of a home crowd,’’ Stiemsma said. Stiemsma, who had 6 points and blocked five shots in 24 minutes, was wearing a protective boot on his right foot after the Celtics’ 100-91 victory.

‘‘Bone bruise, nothing major,’’ Stiemsma said. ‘‘I’ll be in this for awhile yet. If I can walk, I can play. So I’mnot going to take any time off.’’


Said Rivers: ‘‘Greg has just been great. He’s struggling with his foot, he can’t go through practices, can’t go through shootarounds. He takes his boot off and plays in games.

‘‘He’s just around the ball, a lot. And he’s got confidence now, you can tell. When we swing it, he’s shooting it. When a 5 can step out and make shots like that, it stretches our offense.’’

A Gooden job

The Bucks’ Drew Gooden was held to 6 points on 2-of-12 shooting. ‘‘Boston did a good job taking us out of what we wanted to run, defending the pick and roll,’’ Gooden said. ‘‘They did that especially well with Garnett. If you look at our box scores, it was night and day. We only had 23 assists on 15 turnovers. They took us out of that tonight.’’

Frank Dell’Apa can be reached at f_dellapa@globe.com.