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NBA Roundup: Vacation Time For Shaq

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• Shaquille O'Neal is going to need surgery to repair some torn cartilage in his knee, and he'll be missing 4-6 weeks. That surely comes as devastating news to the three or four of you out there who thought Shaq would be playing a full 82 games this year. I suppose it's important to note now, but in April, it's going to matter less than the New York Knicks. Oh, and speaking of the Knicks... they beat the hell out of the Shaq-less Heat last night, 100-76.

• Steve Nash is battling some injury problems himself. It's nothing that requires surgery, but back spasms kept him out the Suns win over the Sixers last night, and they'll force him to stand up on the team flight to Salt Lake City. Oh well... at least it'll give someone else a chance to sit in Amare Stoudamire's lap for a change. The Suns didn't miss him last night, as Leandro Barbosa stepped in with 26 points and 10 boards in a 106-94 win over Philadelphia.


• Kobe Bryant became the youngest player ever to score 17,000 points last night with 31 against the Raptors. It's hard to believe this is his 11th year in the NBA... it seems like just yesterday that was young and people seemed to, you know, like him. He claims he's getting the explosion back in his knee. Lakers win, 107-100.

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