Eyebrows were raised when the Celtics signed Jermaine O'Neal two summers ago. The C's got the better of O'Neal in two playoff series — one with Indiana, one with the Heat — so people wondered why they believed he was part of the inside answer.

Celtics players actually pushed to bring him in, and while he never was able to stay healthy, the team had some of its better numbers when he was on the floor. It should also be appreciated that he gave up his body on charges and played a physical style in an age when many of his peers do not.

"I'm not a guy that's going to be out there yelling and talking a lot," said O'Neal, whose season — and possibly career — will end with surgery to repair his left wrist. "I'm a guy that's going to go out and just do it, like the whole Dwight Howard thing. It really bothered me when he knocked Avery (Bradley) down and busted his lip. I told Avery, 'Don't worry about it. I'm going to handle it.'