BOSTON -- After sitting out Monday's game against the Washington Wizards, Jermaine O'Neal made one thing clear: he was not injured.
O'Neal was out of the lineup due to a sore left hamstring, a decision he says was made by the Celtics staff based on the upcoming schedule. The Celtics were on the second half of a back-to-back and play four games in six days this week.
No, its not an injury, he said following the Celtics 100-92 win. I got here with the intentions of playing and (Celtics trainer) Ed Lacerte went through the regular routine of our pregame stuff and it still was sore, which has been sore the last three days, and he just thought based off our schedule, hed prefer for me not to play.
I came to the arena with the thought process that I was playing. He had a conversation with Doc (Rivers) and sometimes players get trumped, you know, with whatever decision they have. But its not a hamstring pull or anything like that. Ill be ready to go on Wednesday against the New Jersey Nets.
Rookie Greg Stiemsma started in place of ONeal. He recorded 13 points, seven rebounds, and two blocks in 21 minutes. O'Neal is averaging 7.0 points and 3.8 rebounds this season.