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Shaq With Celtics in Oklahoma City

LATEST UPDATE: Shaq will not play tonight, according to A. Sherrod Blakely's Twitter. However, he has not been ruled out for the remainder of this four-game road trip.

While no indication has been given as to whether or not he will play, Shaquille O'Neal did travel with the Celtics to Oklahoma City, where they will face the Thunder at 7:00pm this evening. O'Neal's still recovering from a deep right knee bruise that he suffered in Boston's 105-101 victory over the New York Knicks on October 29. 

O'Neal's presence could serve dividends tonight, as he has something of a size advantage over the players who typically maintain the middle for Oklahoma City - Nenad Krstic and Serge Ibaka (used at the power forward spot as well). While Krstic stands a mere inch shorter than O'Neal, if their listed weights are to be trusted, Shaq weighs over 80 pounds more than Krstic. Ibaka would face a similar issue, as Shaq has nearly 90 pounds on him. Oklahoma City's other option at center - rookie Cole Aldrich - is logging less than 10 minutes per game this season, and doesn't differ from Krstic too drastically in terms of size. 

The four-game road trip the Celtics find themselves on won't get any easier once they depart Oklahoma City, as they'll take on the Dallas Mavericks tomorrow, the Miami Heat on Thursday, and the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday. Even if Shaq can't go tonight, hopefully he can work his way back for at least a portion of this road swing. 

We'll post more updates on Shaq's status for tonight's game as they become available closer to tip-off. 

UPDATE: According to A. Sherrod Blakely's Twitter, Shaq will be a game-time decision tonight. 

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