Ruland is believed to have a partial tear in either the upper part of the Achilles' tendon or in a calf muscle and has been placed on the injured list. He came to the Spectrum on crutches Saturday night to take treatment and watch his teammates defeat New Jersey, 115-94, and does not anticipate playing again until after the NBA's All-Star Game Feb. 9.
"It hurt all along, I felt stiff, I probably should have taken a few games off," Ruland said. "I'm thinking about pursuing legal action, but I have to determine who would be responsible. (Would it be) the guys pushing the luggage cart? The Celtics? The city of Boston? I have to look into that."
Ruland, 33, insisted that the current injury would not stop what has been a remarkable comeback. He rejoined the team Jan. 7 after being forced into retirement during the 1986-87 season because of a damaged left knee. He appeared in five games in '86-87 and already has played in nine this season, working under an unusual contract that pays him the the league-mininum salary of $130,000 on a prorated basis, plus $10,000 for each game in which he plays or is available to play.
"This won't stop me," Ruland said. "This had nothing to do with basketball. I got run over by a luggage cart. That's hard to swallow.
"I just remember it was about 10:15 that night, I was waiting to get on the bus. We were going to the airport to catch a charter flight to Baltimore, where we were playing (against Washington) the next night. My neighbor, who had been to the game, was there, saw the whole thing."
A freak accident?
"It can't be accidental, they were moving too fast," Ruland said. "I look at (my leg) now, I'm amazed I lasted as long as I did.
"(But) this just makes me even more determined (to play). My knee feels fine. Who ever could foresee anything like this happening?"