In an interview on WEE"s Mut & Merloni show, Celtics center Jermaine O'Neal disputed the rumor that he asked for a buyout to sign with Miami.
"I was a little bitter about it," O'Neal said. "To answer your question, it was totally not true. Me and Danny Ainge never had a conversation about a buyout, we never talked about anything else but the seriousness of my injury."
O'Neal said that a few days after he reinsured his wrist in Dallas on Feb. 20, doctors told him that he had to have surgery to repair what has been described as a chronic degenerative condition in his wrist. O'Neal originally tore ligaments in his wrist last season. The team announced on Monday that O'Neal will have surgery and miss the rest of the season.
"When [the doctor] said that to me, it made me extremely emotional because basketball has been so close to me since I was eight years old," O'Neal said. "For a doctor to say, 'You have to worry about things other things outside of basketball,' that was tough. To hear people talk about a buyout, and everybody's got their opinion about it, and they never heard it from me. They never heard it from Danny. We had a meeting the next day and we both were kind of blown away, because we didn't know where that came from."
O'Neal said he elected to not have surgery after the season because the timetable for recover would have been seven to eight months and could have ended his career.
"I wouldn't have been able to workout during the summer time, which furthermore probably would have ended my career," O'Neal said. "I would have never come into a season out of shape and not worked out during the summer time. This is an injury that has gotten worse now, from last year. It was never a thought abut playing for someone else, it was: Will I ever play again?"
O'Neal also said that he was going to sign with Dallas in the summer of 2010 before the Celtics called him and changed his mind with the goal of winning a championship. "Winning a championship is all I wanted to do," he said. "Not finishing the job to try to go somewhere else was not in my DNA."
He acknowledged that his two-year career with the Celtics has been frustrating due to his injuries, which also included knee surgery last season.
"Nobody ever expects to get injured and for sure nobody wants to be injured. It's been two very tough years," O'Neal said. "Especially coming off last year where I had a knee surgery and had three very tough procedures done in the knee and had to fight back like hell to get back for the end of the regular season and also the playoffs.
"So, basically I worked out through the summer and throughout the lockout and really put myself in a position to have a healthy season. That's really the most disappointing thing about this right now. I signed on to do a job and for the fist time in my career I wasn't able to finish."
For more Celtics news, visit the team page at weei.com/celtics. To hear the whole interview, go to the Mut & Merloni audio on demand page.
FOXBORO — WEEI.com’s Mike Petraglia and Chris Price wrap up how the Patriots fared in the 2015 NFL draft and what they accomplished.
WEEI.com’s Mike Petraglia and Ryan Hannable discuss the selection of 6-foot-2, 320-pound defensive lineman Malcom Brown out of the University of Texas by the Patriots with the 32nd overall pick Thursday night and where the Patriots might go to fill needs in Rounds 2 and 3 on Friday.
Greg Dickerson and John Tomase discuss the amazing season for the Celts and if they have any chance against Lebron and the Cleveland Cavs in a seven game series. If they do, HOW ... how do they get it done?
Brian "White Mamba" Scalabrine joins the guys to talk about the Celtics playoff push, the development of Marcus Smart and James Young, and the prospect of Brad Stevens leaving the Celtics for a college job.
Brow Buff's Sam Packard and Ben Kichen break down Marcus Smart's unfortunate ball tap, debate leadership in the Celtics locker room, and rehash the great Kevin Love to Boston rumors.
Joe and Dave are joined by Mookie Betts who had the first multi-HR game of his career as he drove in the Red Sox only runs in a 2-0 win over the Rays
Former big leaguer and broadcaster Tim McCarver joined Joe and Dave on the night where the 1975 Red Sox were honored at Fenway and talked about his experiences as a player and broadcaster and gave some insight into Allen Craig
On the night where the 1975 Red Sox were honored at Fenway, Luis Tiant came up to the booth to talk about his time in the majors and the 1975 team
The awesomely knowledgeable Fluto Shinzawa calls DJ, Naoko and Pete to talk about his thoughts on the future of the B's. He discusses his column from earlier this week on Cam Neely wanting to give Claude the ax earlier in the season but not getting the ok. Fluto shares his thoughts on Chiarelli's firing, the future for Claude and where the Bruins should go from here. He also gives his opinion on potential moves the team can make, who would fit in here, his thoughts on the NHL playoffs so far and more.
In the final hour of the "midseason finale" as DJ likes to call it, the crew discuss more about the future of the Bruins franchise, the possible power struggle in the front office and who should be the head coach going forward. They talk to intelligent and talented Fluto Shinzawa about all of these thing and more in an excellent interview, and finally, DJ says THANK YOU!
DJ, Naoko and Pete get into the huge week for the Bruins that saw the franchise move on from GM Peter Chiarelli. They discuss why that was done and if they agree. What does this mean for Claude? They talk about Claude and if he can exist here. If not, who would work in Boston? They also get into the NHL Draft Lottery last night and talk to ESPN Boston's Joey "National" McDonald live from Tampa, Florida.
Curt Schilling joined the show to give his thoughts on the Sox.
The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane.
The guys discussed the Sox honoring the 1975 team.
The Wells Report has been released and it's very damning of Tom Brady and two Patriot employees. We broke the news on our show. Lou, Christian and Tim go over some of the key items in the documents, and take caller reactions.
Kevin Millar talks about the rotation, Allan Craig, Clay Buchholz , Ben Cherington and what it was like playing with Pedro Martinez.
Heath Evans joins the show to talk about how the AFC East looks after the NFL draft.
We talk all things Sox, good and mostly bad, with one of the great voices of the club, our friend Dave O'Brien.
Warranties last only 90 days, but the NFL has taken 102 days to investigate "Deflategate" and the hypocrisy is still around in leaps and bounds.
Whether it be Rex Ryan visiting with a potential murderer, or the Seahawks denial about whether Frank Clark assaulted a woman, the NFL and their no-tolerance stance on domestic violence looks worse now with the 2015 draftees.
Mikey, Lenny, and Erin talk about the Sox 7-1 win over the Baltimore Orioles on Patriots Day and the Sox hold on first place in the AL East. Also, the Celtics trail the Cavs 1 Game to 0 in their 1st Round series and the 2015 Boston Marathon is in the books.
Mikey Adams, joined by Lenny Megliola and Chris Villani, talks about the Red Sox home opening win at Fenway and the Bruins fallout after missing the playoffs including the future of Peter Chiarelli and Claude Julien.
Chris Price joins Mut to talk about how Revis will heat up the Jets-Pats rivalry next season
Ben and Russ preview Revs vs Red Bulls, talk about the state of the MLS, and discuss the latest rumors and gossip.
In honor of the release of "Avengers: Age of Ultron," Jerry and his pal Adam "Uncle Buck" Cormack discuss the Golden Age of the Superhero Movie, why the genre is so popular and count down their all time favorite superhero films.
The NFL has welcomed 32 new players into the league as of last night and there are many implications for Fantasy Football this season. Jim Hackett & Pete Davidson of Rotobahn.com get into who was picked, where they landed and how the impacts the 2015 Fantasy Football landscape. Jameis Winston, Marcus Mariota, Amari Cooper and Kevin White top the list of 10 skill position players taken in Round 1 and Jim and Pete have plenty of analysis and opinion to bridge the gap before Round 2 starts. Enjoy!
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We discuss the disappointment that was the big fight, and how it seems like the glory days of boxing are so far removed that they'll never return.More from this show
Warranties last only 90 days, but the NFL has taken 102 days to investigate "Deflategate" and the hypocrisy is still around in leaps and bounds.More from this show