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Shaq out for Game 5. Not that anyone will notice.

May 11, 2011, 11:15 AM EDT

Miami Heat v Boston Celtics - Game Three Getty Images

For those of you playing NBA playoffs fantasy basketball, let’s hope you didn’t pick up Shaquille O’Neal.

After playing 3:31 in the first quarter of Game 4 and picking up two quick fouls and nothing else, Shaq has had a relapse of his calf/Achilles injury and will not play in Game 5, Doc Rivers told the media, according to CSN New England’s A. Sherrod Blakely. Shaq is reportedly dragging his bad leg around the facility.

“”It just never healed, and still hasn’t,” Rivers said. “Every time he plays now, it gets worse. There’s nothing you can do about it.”

Shaq played sparingly in Games 3 and 4, but has not mattered in this series. Other than the Shaq the Celtics had at the start of the season would have created size matchup problems for Miami, and the Heat have needed that.

Miami has gone a lot with a smaller lineup that has Chris Bosh and 6’9” Joel Anthony at the center, and the Celtics have not been able to punish the Heat inside for that. The athleticism of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade is part of that — they can drop down and block shots — but a healthy Shaq would have changed the equation. But you can no longer bet on a healthy Shaq being there.

Boston needs to find a way to make the Heat pay and change that dynamic fast, or their season will end tonight.

  1. jamie54 - May 11, 2011 at 11:59 AM

    Addition by subtraction. Shaq hasn’t added anything to this team, no loss there.

  2. kyleortonsarm - May 11, 2011 at 12:12 PM

    Alright Shaq this is the thing. You’ve been great, classy, dominate and fun to watch for years now, but like Brett Farve before you, sometimes you should know when to leave the game you love.

  3. dgforreal - May 11, 2011 at 12:17 PM

    Just retire already bro. This is getting pathetic. You’ve had an excellent career but now it’s time to hang it up while your body still works.

  4. SmackSaw - May 11, 2011 at 12:26 PM

    The Big Done

  5. savoirlaire - May 11, 2011 at 2:33 PM

    Lose Perkins, add Krstic, Murphy, Green and Shaq. Now that is subtraction by addition!

    Shaq has now reached the point of Willie Mays/Arnold Palmer pathetic, they all should have quit a lot earlier…

  6. Waxxx4321 - May 11, 2011 at 2:38 PM

    Shaq is not a force not dominant anymore, his time is over…i respect his legacy but its time for him to give it up, go join whatever local police force and have a bunch of donuts…

  7. cosanostra71 - May 11, 2011 at 2:44 PM

    I wish he would have retired before this year. It’s been tough watching him struggle up and down the court this year.

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