Pregame: Rondo a go; Shaq a no

NEW YORK -- A couple of quick pregame notes before the Boston Celtics joust with the New York Knicks:

* Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo arrived early at Madison Square Garden and got in a workout before most of his teammates even arrived. According to Celtics coach Doc Rivers, Rondo is fine and, while his right pinkie injury is unlikely to heal the remainder of the season, it shouldn't be too much of a detriment to Rondo's play moving forward.

"Everybody that's playing is good," Rivers said. Asked if the hand injury is a concern, Rivers said, "No, hand injuries are a concern in the fact that, once you get one, it doesn’t heal. No one is going to let them heal. It's tough when you're a point guard, you're handling the ball and you're going to get hit in the hand."

* Celtics center Shaquille O'Neal did not participate in the team's on-court workouts Monday and instead logged more conditioning work on the exercise bike.

"Just bike work today," said Rivers, who admitted the time to reintegrate both O'Neals -- Shaq and Jermaine -- is running out.

Rivers acknowledged it is tough to tell what Shaq will be able to contribute when he gets back.

"The one thing he'll give us is size and hard fouls," Rivers said. "Then the rest will be determined by how healthy he is and what he can do. We need that size. But obviously the clock is ticking with him and J.O. and we need those guys on the floor."