Shaquille O'Neal left Thursday NIght's game in Boston in the 2nd Quarter with what the Cavaliers are calling a "significant thumb sprain" on his right hand. O'Neal looked to get injured when Glen Davis of the Celtics swiped the ball out of Shaq's hands as he was going up for a shot. O'neal originally stayed in the game, but left shortly thereafter when he continued to feel pain in the hand.
After the game, O'Neal said he would be fine, but Brian Windhorst of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer said not to read too much into that.
After the game Shaq said he was going to be OK and wasn't wearing anything on thumb. But wait for that MRI, "sprain" means torn ligament.
That MRI is reportedly coming today, and Windhorst takes a stab at how long O'Neal might be out.
Should know more about Shaq's thumb today. Amateur here based on experience: Partial tear, 2-3 weeks. Full tear: 6+ weeks.
If Shaq's out for a while, it's bad news for the Cavaliers. Sure, they won last night's game by going to a small lineup, but that won't work against many teams in the league. The temporary absence of Zydrunas Ilgauskas, who is likely to return to the Cavaliers by the end of the month after being bought out by the Wizards, means the Cavaliers don't currently have another center on the roster. Scott Schroeder of SB Nation's NBA Developmental League blog Ridiculous Upside is reporting the Cavs will call Darnell Jackson back up to provide some depth, but not having Ilgauskas as insurance for Shaq could really cost the Cavaliers as they work for home-court advantage throughout the playoffs.