Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there's nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump
O'Neal was the first Celtic introduced to the TD Garden crowd in the starting lineup announcements and was greeted by a thunderous ovation. He followed it up with an 18-minute effort in which he registered five points on 2-of-2 shooting and six rebounds.
"It felt good, it felt good to be back," O'Neal said. "Again, it's just going to be about progression. Today was probably the first day that I felt sore coming into the game, and I didn't even know I was going to start until the shootaround. But we got into the weight room, did some leg stuff, got loose, and that's kind of the process.
"[Monday] will be good to get a practice in, to get acquainted with the new system. They changed some plays, so I'm kind of learning on the fly and asking [Rajon] Rondo at the same time during the game where I was supposed to be. But all-in-all it was a little bit better today than it was in the Atlanta game."
I so want to get excited about having a tall guy back that rebounds, but he had six rebounds against Detroit… and I'm pretty sure I could grab at least two. I mean… hell… Jeff Green grabbed four of them. So it can't be THAT hard.
So far, so good with Jermaine. I keep waiting for the "something swelled up" news but we're not seeing that…. yet. I'm a bit gun shy with the way this season is going. And with word that Nenad Krstic could be back tomorrow (along with Troy Murphy), The Celtics are start to assemble some kind of front line. I think Nads moving to the second unit will be a great help. It'll take the pressure off of him.
Jermaine's style and ability makes him more suited to play with the starters. That's going to be very important for this team as we get ready for the playoffs. His health is extremely important.
On Page 2: The team sounds optimistic about Shaq
It was almost like a tease having him available for such a short stretch.
“It was great. We had size,” said Doc Rivers. “You know, it’s amazing what size does.”
The Celtics were encouraged, though, when O’Neal was diagnosed with a right calf strain. There is no timetable for his return yet, but Rivers projects, “I don’t think very long, honestly.”
Nonetheless, his teammates felt for their big man and hope a speedy recovery.
“It’s minor,” said Garnett. “He’s a huge dude. Hopefully he can bounce back from this, but leg injuries are not easy and we’re just hoping for the best at this point.”
I like KG's "he's a huge dude" and little snicker. And Doc's use of the words "very minor" are encouraging. Now let's see how long this "very minor" injury keeps the "very large" Shaquille O'Neal out.
It was great to see the big fell back, wasn't it? It would be nice to have that for even a few minutes with some regularity again.
Related links: WEEI: Latest Shaq injury leaves Celtics looking for answers | Herald: Shaq impressive before new injury | Short circuit with Shaq | Globe: Injury spoils fun
The rest of the links:
WEEI: C's win but lose Shaq again | Relieved Krstic could play Tuesday | Pierce knows C's don't control their own destiny | Herald: Ray shows signs of shaking slump | Celtics surge to win | Globe: Health is front & center | Krstic aiming for tomorrow | CSNNE: Celtics ideal roster still not together | Allen at a loss to explain drop in production | Krstic hopeful to play Tuesday | ESPN Boston: Aggressive Garnett leads efficient offense