Has Shaq Played His Last NBA Game?

Shaquille O'Neal is doubtful for tonight's Game 5 in the Eastern Conference semifinals, a must-win for the Celtics, who trail the Heat 3-1 in their best-of-seven series. And considering he only played a little more than three minutes in Game 4 because of his nagging Achilles injury that has basically kept him sidelined since late January, that "doubtful" is probably a bit optimistic. 

↵

Head coach Doc Rivers has already said the only reason Shaq didn't play more in Game 4 was because of health -- "It was physical." -- which probably means he won't be able to go should the Celtics force a Game 5 (or Game 6 ... or Game 7). So: has Shaq, who is 39 years old with a player option for 2011-12, played his last game? Not just his last game with the Celtics, but his final game in the NBA?

↵

On that, Doc's not ready to speculate just yet, but he didn't exactly paint a rosy picture.

↵
↵

"It's nothing he can do. It's not like he's not trying," Rivers said. "He's done everything you possibly can do to get healthy. Unfortunately for him, he just hasn't been able to do it. When he originally got injured no one thought it was that serious. It just never healed and it still hasn't, and now every time he plays it gets worse."

↵

Trending Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SB Nation Boston

You must be a member of SB Nation Boston to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Boston. You should read them.

Join SB Nation Boston

You must be a member of SB Nation Boston to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Boston. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.