Post-game Reactions

Per Chris Forsberg of ESPNBoston.com with some key practice notes from the afternoon via Doc:

On the team’s health: “Everybody’s good,” said Rivers. “Everybody is feeling pretty good. Shaq went through practice, we didn’t do anything today, we just watched film and walked over some stuff, and then the second unit [not including O’Neal] worked on their stuff. Right now, we expect every single guy, including Shaq, to play [in Game 3].”

On Shaq’s chances of playing: Asked why he’s now more confident that Shaq could play, Rivers said with a laugh , “Because he told me he was going to play,” then added, “[Team trainer] Eddie [Lacerte] thought he would play, so I do expect him to play. If he didn’t, it would be because something went wrong in practice with his body. But right now, I expect him to play.”

Rivers admitted the team isn’t sure what Shaq’s practice workload will look like this week in order to prevent the sort of post-activity soreness he experienced after his first full on-court workout Monday in Miami. That soreness contributed to him not being active for Game 2.

“We’re not going to let him do too much,” said Rivers. “Someone will ask: How much is too much? Hell if I know. I don’t know what too much is. Walking on the floor could be too much. We’ll figure that out.”

On Ray Allen’s bruised chest: “It’s still a little tight,” said Allen. “It wasn’t bad, but I couldn’t do some of the things I wanted to do when I worked out. It feels a lot better from two days ago.”

Full analysis of Shaq’s potential impact on the starting lineup on the way later tonight, but it’s safe to say Saturday night’s main event just got even more intriguing if that’s possible. Does Shaq play an uneventful few minutes with a couple points and three quick fouls? Does he jumpstart Boston’s inept offense at the rim? Somewhere in-between? And will it even matter? Only 48 hours until we find out.

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Brian Robb

Brian Robb co-founded CelticsHub in 2009 and is the currently editor-in-chief. He is a producer and reporter at 98.5 The Sports Hub in Boston and also contributes to Boston.com and Bleacher Report among other outlets.
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  • James Patrick

    Who is the man, that can with one hand….. SHAQ!

    Welcome back Big Fella. We REALLY need you!

    • Batman


  • someguyinsac

    I'll hoist a beer with the news that Shaq will be back, not that I needed an excuse to hoist a beer today anyways. Good news, it's Cinco de Shaq-o!

  • talesofJP

    Sort of tells you this is a must win, basically an elimination game. If we had won 1 of the games in Miami I don't think Shaq comes back yet. We do need him though, even just for confidence sake. Having a big body will help, hopefully he puts Wade or LBJ on his @$$

    • MikeD

      Yeah I agree with that. Doc does not sound confident in him at all. Playing him essentially risks losing him for the rest of the season. But as you said, with the season basically on the line Saturday they need to put him out there. Heres to hoping he holds up.

  • Dan

    "Walking on the floor could be too much."

    Sounds promising!

  • Mr Cash

    Great, we're losing this series because Miami is uber athletic, so we get Shaq back. Old, slow, unathletic Shaq.


    • Tate


    • torpid bunny

      Shaq is old and has injury issues, but he's not unathletic. He's a tremendous athlete, a physical force of nature who in his day that would make D12 look like a punk.

  • duggyfresh88

    I won't spam this on here all the time, but just posting that i am starting a new celtics blog with wordpress so if you are interested here in the link: http://celticbeat.wordpress.com/

  • torpid bunny

    My take is that Miami was certainly the superior team in the first two games, however the difference was smaller than some may think. Statistically the two teams were basically identical in the first game (same number of field goals and rebounds, three more turnovers for Miami, assists basically equal), and it was the same in game two, except Miami had six more rebounds. The big difference in both games was free throw attempts: Miami had 14 more in both games. Obviously, they had better penetration, but they also, unquestionably, had a home court advantage in officiating. I don't think it was an abnormal advantage: say 3-5 more calls per game.

    Assuming that advantage switches to the celtics at home, the free throw disparity may be cut in half or more, everything else being equal. Here's where the Shaq angle comes in: If Shaq is active enough to have an impact, even for 10 minutes of the game, that will further reduce the effectiveness of drives to the basket and allow Garnett more freedom to cover the mid range passing lanes. An active Shaq can also give Rondo a few more easy buckets, even in limited minutes. So, just being at home and having Shaq play a bit may be enough to essentially square up these teams, IMHO.

    • Smoov

      Re: free throws
      Seriously, just watching the games Boston's offense comprised of jump shots while Miami was able to turn the corner on their pick and rolls and get to the rim seemingly at will. People need to stop assuming that we're losing because of "ref bias." The fact is that Rondo and Pierce have to find someway to get into the paint consistently, as we have to work really really hard to score.

      • lakershater13

        Well in game 1 miami shot 14 more fts. Celtics actually had more shots at the rim!

        • Mr Cash

          the 'more shots at the rim' thing is distorted because if someone gets fouled in the paint and the shot doesnt go in, it does NOT count as a shot

          i.e. if you're 2/2 in the paint, and the next possession get into the paint, get fouled, and your shot doesnt go in, you're still 2/2 in the paint

      • torpid bunny

        Not ref bias. Just normal home court advantage, which means a difference of 3-5 calls when switching from road to home.

      • torpid bunny

        I agree that an area of improvement for the celtics is penetration. But when the celtics are playing really well, Rondo and Pierce and Ray are all taking drives AND taking mid range shots. Miami's strategy was obviously body up Ray and Pierce with, you know, two of the greatest athletes in the league/world, but sag off Rondo, allowing Rondo's defender to easily rotate to either Ray or Pierce. Ray got very little in Game 2 (but god bless Ray droppin fall-away treys from the corner in game 1). I think this is what Doc is talking about criticizing himself because he realized that he didn't counter Miami's defense in the fourth quarter of game 2.

        An active Shaq can give Rondo much more offensive fluidity, because Rondo knows how to feed him around the basket at his age (something the Cavs had no clue about). Absent that, all the guards have to turn it up. But Rondo has to carry the load somehow.

  • Illuminating post. I in truth liked it. Difficult to find quality post these days. Personally I ca n’t wait for the Ps Vita.

  • It sucks that the news does not cover this as much as Steve Jobs death. He did way more. RIP Dennis