Shaquille O'Neal Will Not Play Against Knicks In Game 1 On Sunday

Shaquille O'Neal, who sprained his right calf near the end of the regular season, will not play for the Boston Celtics in game one of their first round series against the New York Knicks on Sunday evening. Read more at CelticsBlog.

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Shaquille O'Neal Will Not Play Against Knicks In Game One On Sunday

It's no secret that the Boston Celtics' hopes and dreams for a record 18th NBA title rests with Shaquille O'Neal. However, their worst nightmares came true on Saturday afternoon with the announcement that O'Neal will not play in Sunday's playoff opener against the New York Knicks.

"We tried to get him out there to practice today to simulate the game as much as we could and he's not ready," team president Danny Ainge said. "We don't know when he'll be ready." (via WEEI)

Boston's team doctor, Brian McKeon, noted that the decision to hold O'Neal out of game one was not a result of a lock of effort to return by O'Neal.

"This guy has been working his tail off. He's been working so, so hard," McKeon said. "Today we did like a mock trail, pregame workout and he failed. It's just too sore. We'll get back to work tomorrow."  (via WEEI)

  O'Neal averaged 9.2 points and 4.8 rebounds in 37 regular season games this season.

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Celtics' Shaquille O'Neal Will Not Play Against Miami Heat On Sunday

Shaquille O'Neal did not travel with the team over the weekend and will not play against the Miami Heat on Sunday or the Washington Wizards on Monday, according to a report from ESPN Boston.

O'Neal had been sidelined since the beginning of February with an Achilles injury, but returned to action on April 3rd against the Detroit Pistons, but sprained his right calf and was forced to leave the game. The Celtics only have three games remaining in the regular season, and are relying heavily on having a healthy O'Neal in the postseason. 

With no scheduled practice days before the regular-season finale, it would appear that O'Neal might not be back on the floor until the postseason. The Celtics play Game No. 82 Wednesday night when the New York Knicks visit TD Garden, then likely will enjoy three days off before the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs open. (via ESPN Boston)

O'Neal is averaging 9.2 points and 4.8 rebounds in 37 games this season for Boston.

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Shaquille O'Neal Strains Right Calf In Celtics' Win On Sunday

The Celtics' worst nightmare came true on Sunday night against the Detroit Pistons when veteran center Shaquille O'Neal suffered yet another injury just five minutes into his comeback from an Achilles injury that had kept him sidelined since February 1st.

In the first minute of the second quarter, O'Neal (six points) came up limping and favoring his right foot while running up the floor. O'Neal limped off the court and was taken to the locker room in a wheelchair. Boston won the game, 101-90.

The severity of O'Neal's injury is not yet known, and Celtics head coach Doc Rivers was uncertain about whether or not he would play O'Neal in Boston's remaining regular season games.

"I don't know what to do, honestly," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said when asked if O'Neal should be shut down for the rest of the regular season. "My inclination is not, because he needs to play. We have to play at full-tilt in six or seven [games]."    

O'Neal was unavailable for comment after the game, as he reportedly left the stadium prior to the game's end. In 36 games with the Celtics this season, O'Neal is averaging 9.3 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per contest.

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