Shaq in ‘better shape’ now

Brian Windhorst of reports that Shaquille O’Neal appears to be in better shape now than when he first injured his hand.

He wasn’t on a scale, but to the naked eye he appears to have lost weight since he went down with the injury just about a month ago.

When he left to go to Florida after the surgery he was telling teammates that he’d not just be back before the end of the regular season, but that he’d be in better shape when he comes back than went he left.

Nothing can prepare anyone for playing in real games and it will probably take a while for him to get some rhythm when he does return. But if there were any concerns about O’Neal letting himself go because he’s not playing, take it from me — it appears to have been quite the opposite.

When we learned that O’Neal was going to miss significant time due to thumb surgery, his overall conditioning was a huge concern, no pun intended. While cardio-vascular conditioning is different from overall weight, it’s a lot easier to get back into playing shape if you’re not carrying around 10-20 lbs of extra weight. And it appears that Shaq has been serious about his conditioning while he’s been injured.

If true, this is a big boost for the Cavs’ title hopes (and chances of retaining LeBron this summer).

Photo from fOTOGLIF

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