The Boston Celtics defeated the Detroit Pistons in Shaquille O’Neal’s reutrn after being absent for more than 2 months with an ankle injury. However his comeback was not very successful as he left the game in the second quarter after playing for just 5 minutes.
The 39-year-old center raised major concerns about whether he will be able to contribute in the postseason. Coach Doc Rivers seemed pretty down when asked by the media if the injury-prone Shaq should be shut down for the rest of the season. Basketball lines.
The Celtics medical staff claimed that Shaq’s injury is no serious thing and it is not related with the same the Achilles’ tendon strain that had kept him out since February. The doctor said this new injury seems to be a strained right calf and they hope that the former-MVP can recover as soon as possible for the playoffs.
Shaquille wasn’t able to play for more than five minutes in Boston’s victory over the Pistons 101-90 on Sundya at the TD Garden. Paul Pierce alias ‘The Truth’ scored 22 points while teammate Rajon Rondo added 14 dimes for the Celts, who remained one game and a half behind the Miami Heat in the race for the No. 2 spot in the Eastern Conference playoffs. Basketball betting lines.
Will Bynum scored 20 points, Tayshaun Prince had 16 and Charlie Villanueva 15 for the Pistons.
O’Neal stepped on the court with less than 5 minutes left in the first quarter and received a standing ovation from the crowd. He scored on Boston’s first two possessions and again later before heading to the bench for the final play of the quarter.
He returned for the start of the second but he lasted less than a minute before limping off to the locker room followed by the medical staff. The team said he would be re-evaluated at halftime. At the break, a Celtics spokesman said he would not return to the game.
The Celtics had been expecting O’Neal to take important minutes at center in the playoffs, especially after trading Kendrick Perkins to Oklahoma City for Nenad Krstic, who is day-to-day with a bone bruise in his right knee. Besides, backup center Jermaine O’Neal has had injury problems of his own too, and has just played in no more than 20 games this season.
Boston’s frontline seems to be suffering several injury issues mainly from Shaq, Krstic and Jermaine O’Neal. Their presence will be important if they want to go deep in the playoffs. Odds.
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