Boston Celtics center Jermaine O'Neal is expected to return on Wednesday night against the New Jersey Nets after missing one game due to a tight left hamstring, the Boston Globe's Gary Washburn reports.
O'Neal participated in the team's shootaround on Wednesday morning and will likely start against New Jersey, according to Washburn.
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The 33-year old center said he showed up to the TD Garden on Monday night expecting to play against the Washington Wizards, but was kept out of that game nonetheless. Starting in O'Neal's place, Greg Stiemsma registered 13 points, seven rebounds and two blocks, perhaps doing enough to move ahead of Chris Wilcox in Boston's rotation.
Wilcox was O'Neal's primary backup to begin the season, but injured his shoulder and missed three games, during which time Stiemsma thrived as a shot-blocking threat who can also hit open mid-range jump shots.