The Celtics are reportedly moving forward as if Shaquille O’Neal won’t return this postseason. The Eagle Tribune reports the Celtics decided to do so after Shaq failed a simple sprint test at the team’s practice facilities, unable even to make his way up and down the court one time. (h/t Red’s Army)
Shaquille O’Neal may have worn a Boston Celtics uniform for the last time.
In what would be a crippling blow to their chances of winning a title, the Celtics are going forward as if the affable center won’t be returning to team for the playoffs, according to an NBA source. …
The Celtics came to this conclusion after Shaq failed to complete one simple sprint up and down the court during a “conditioning test” on Saturday, before he limped off the court in Waltham.
The Celtics held out a slim hope Shaq would be able to make his return in their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series against the Knicks or possibly in the conference semifinals, if they advanced.
“If he were to come back, it would have to be a miraculous recovery,” said the source, who requested anonymity. “And at his age (he turned 39 on March 6) and physical condition, the Celtics have planned accordingly.”
I’m at once shocked and completely prepared for this news, if that makes any sense whatsoever. I’ve said it before, but it bears mentioning again: thank God for Jermaine O’Neal’s revival, and pray to the lord his sprained wrist isn’t bad.
Last night, my buddy asked me when the Celtics would need a healthy Shaq.
“If Jermaine O’Neal stays healthy and plays like he has been, they could win a championship even if Shaq never plays another second in his career,” I replied.
“Do you trust Jermaine O’Neal?” he asked.
I’m starting to think I have no choice.