Posted by sasilverandblack on November 11th, 2010
Both O’Neal’s have had lingering injury problems throughout the twilight of their careers and it has once again become a problem with the Celtics. Shaquille O’Neal said that his bruised right knee is in good enough shape to get back on the court for Thursday night’s round two showdown with the Heat after missing the last five games. Jermaine O’Neal, who sat out the second half of Monday’s loss to the Mavericks, said the soreness in his left knee has not subsided so he will sit out, possibly for the remainder of the Celtics four-game road trip.
It is possible that Doc Rivers leans on rookie Semih Erden to start at center if both O’Neals can’t go. Erden is having his own injury pangs with his left shoulder which will apparently require surgery eventually.
Kendrick Perkins could not be more needed right now for the Celtics. Rivers said it himself, this team is merely trying to survive until he gets back. There still is no timetable for his return.
As far as tonight goes, I think the Heat have the upper hand at home. They should learn from their poor offensive performance in their loss on opening night. Dwyane Wade probably won’t have another dud like he did in that game. The Celtics interior defense will be weaker due to the deteriorating health of their frontline. That fact is just one of the things that will be in the Heat’s favor in tonight’s contest.