Apr 1, 2011, 3:20 PM EDT
When the Boston Celtics take the floor in Atlanta Friday night, Jermiane O’Neal will be the starting center.
But he has been off with knee surgery since January, now playing on the second night of a back-to-back. He can’t be counted on for big minutes. So who follows him?
That’s not a lot. But the fact they are calling it a “leg injury” and not saying anything about the severity suggests exactly what went through all our minds when we saw it happen — this is going to be bad. Which would be bad for Boston.
Shaquille O’Neal may be back this weekend, or soon. Boston is going to need him. They are likely to get New York or Philadelphia in the first round, two teams that could push Boston (the Sixers are the scariest lower seed in the East). Then the second round would be Miami, where exploiting the Heat in the paint will be a key to winning the series. Boston needs healthy big men to do that.
And right now they have one less.
- Report: Timberwolves to end up with Thad Young, Anthony Bennett as part of Kevin Love trade 51
- Adam Silver: NBA stars playing in international competition face ‘a big risk’ 12
- Derrick Rose says he’ll play Friday vs. Puerto Rico 12
- Report: Don’t be so sure on Anthony Bennett to Philadelphia rumors 54
- Report: Nike gets chance to match 10-year, $265 million offer to Kevin Durant from Under Armour 18
- Should NBA coaches get NFL style challenge flags? 20
- Report: Suns discussing trade possibilities for Eric Bledsoe 36
- Report: Sixers may look to trade for Amar’e Stoudemire at this season’s deadline 32