When the Celtics first acquired Shaquille O'Neal back in August to be their part-time center, they never in their wildest dreams thought he'd play all 82 games. So all things considered, three out of five ain't bad.
Shaq will be out of action again on Wednesday night as the Celtics take on the Milwaukee Bucks, as the 38-year-old big man continues to nurse a sore left kneecap. Jermaine O'Neal will again start in his place.
The younger O'Neal was solid in his first start as a Celtic, churning out 12 points, two rebounds and two blocks in the team's win in Detroit on Tuesday night. Now the challenge for J.O. is to sustain his performance across back-to-back nights.
He's drawn a daunting matchup. The opposing center Wednesday will be Andrew Bogut, the Bucks' All-NBA center who's averaged a double-double the last two seasons.
Bogut's a physical presence and an efficient scorer around the rim. O'Neal will need to be active down low to slow down the Milwaukee attack.
Here's the full lineup card for Celtics-Bucks:
Rajon Rondo, PG
Ray Allen, SG
Paul Pierce, SF
Kevin Garnett, PF
Jermaine O'Neal, C
Andrew Bogut, C
Drew Gooden, PF
John Salmons, SF
Carlos Delfino, SG
Brandon Jennings, PG