Skip to main content

"I robbed the Celtics. I was ring chasing"

Shaquille-O'Neal

Shaquille O'Neal will always be a Laker. His statue is in front of Staples Center, and he's in the Hall of Fame as a Laker. Yet, he ended his career as a Celtic. That last season is something Shaq will always regret, as he shared on ">Fair Game.

He went to the Celtics, but he wasn't Shaq anymore. 9.2 points per game, 4.8 rebounds and 1.1 blocks don't live up to his legacy. Shaq felt he could help Pierce, Garnett, Allen, and Rondo, but then his Achilles snapped. The worst injury a basketball player can have, one that requires a lot of rehab and work to get back. 

"I said to myself 'I'm old, I don't want to do the rehab thing and try to be the great Shaq player.' ... Shaq is not Shaq when he's averaging 7/8/9 points. "

He came to Boston on a two-year contract. Shaq knew he was at the end of his career, but felt he could contribute in the first year. The second one? He planned a Shaq tour. Something like the sendoff Dirk and Wade had. He had parties and promotors set up in every city. He'd tell stories about every arena and say goodbye to the NBA in the only way that makes sense for Shaq Fu.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

But the injury happened, and he knew it was all over. Danny Ainge told him the roster spot is there for him, and he should come back and play, but Shaquille felt it wouldn't be fair towards the Celtics. If he was done, he couldn't give them his 100%.

"I'm robbing the people, I'm robbing the Celtics. You're only paying me a million, I don't feel right. I'm not coming back, here's your money back sir. Thank you very much." 

In the end, Shaq was honest with himself. He came to the Celtics to help out, and Doc told him he didn't need to do much - just rebound and be a veteran presence. That was something he was still able to do. But in the end, he was chasing his fifth ring and he knew that wasn't a good enough reason to stay.

"I was ring chasing, to be honest. I was ring chasing. We had a chance and I think if I would've got hurt and if they would've kept Perkins I think we would've won. I wanted to help Paul 'cause Paul was one of my favorite players, and I love KG."

Why Arvydas Sabonis never reached his full potential in the NBA

'Arvydas could qualify for a handicapped parking spot' - Why Arvydas Sabonis never reached his full potential in the NBA

A complicated situation, series of injuries and a newly-found love in a foreign country were all factors why the NBA never saw the best version of Arvydas Sabonis

Here's why Emoni Bates will never be Kevin Durant

NBA prospect hyped as the 'Next Kevin Durant' has one major difference from the real KD

Emoni Bates has been drawing comparisons to Kevin Durant. However, their views on social media are nothing alike

Gregg Popovich wanted Kawhi Leonard to be like the Spurs' defensive stopper Bruce Bowen

Gregg Popovich once told Kawhi Leonard that he needed to surpass a certain undrafted Spurs legend

This may be the reason why Kawhi Leonard turned into one of the most lethal defenders of all time.

Russell Westbrook responds to Skip Bayless calling him ‘Westbrick’ on Twitter

Don’t say anything here you wouldn’t say to my face” - Russell Westbrook responds to Skip Bayless calling him ‘Westbrick’ on Twitter

Bayless said that the Lakers selection of Max Christie, who struggled shooting the three in college, would fit in great with ‘Westbrick’, which drew a quick response from Westbrook.

The origin of Michael Jordan's Jumpman logo

Michael Jordan’s Jumpman logo inspiration was revealed and it’s not what you think

Michael Jordan used his own brand to build a business empire. The iconic Jumpman logo will be forever associated to him. However, it was actually inspired from a ballet move and not MJ going for a dunk.

How Kobe Bryant's endorsements helped him bring in money off the court
Play

How Kobe Bryant's endorsements helped him bring in money off the court

Bryant quickly inked a sneaker deal with Adidas that helped open up many different doors for him in the future.

Ray Allen “hearbroken” on overturned abortion verdict

Ray Allen is “hearbroken” after the overturned abortion verdict: "Guns are more protected than a woman’s rights are"

The U.S. Supreme Court overturned the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, removing women's right to abortion which prompted Ray Allen to compare the ruling to rectifying gun laws.

Morris Peterson on getting ejected after slapping Vince Carter: 'We always joke around'

Morris Peterson on getting ejected after slapping Vince Carter: 'We always joke around'

In 2006, Morris Peterson and Vince Carter playfully slapped one another during a game that resulted in Mo Pete being ejected