When we hear the name Shaquille O'Neal, trash talk is not the first thing that comes to mind. The only time a bad-mouthing Shaq made the news was during the peak of his rivalry with the late but great Kobe Bryant. Otherwise, O'Neal seemed tame compared to the likes of Gary Payton, Michael Jordan, or Kevin Garnett. The three are often mentioned in the top trash talkers list.
Shaq goes dark with his trash talk
Other than "Last week Kobe couldn't do without me," it would be interesting to know what exactly Shaq said to his foes to get on their nerves. Per the FULL SEND PODCAST, Shaq gave a sample of his trash talk. And as one of the hosts mentioned, Shaq went very deep and dark with his banter.
"Is that your wife in the other room? Let's see I got 15 now but by the end of the game I'm gonna get 40 and I'm gonna get her number."
Shaquille O'Neal, ">Full Send Podcast
To whom did Shaq utter those words? To Charles Barkley whom he had a scuffle with? Or to Andrew Bynum, whom he also came to blows with? Whoever was on the receiving end of that trash talk indeed had the worst night of his life.
Like Stephen Curry, Shaq is one of those players who changed how the game is played. "Hack-a-Shaq" became a popular strategy wherein teams would foul the poorest free-throw shooter from the opposing side. After Shaq, players like Dwight Howard, DeAndre Jordan, Andre Drummond, and Ben Simmons experienced this irritating strategy.
In addition, the NBA only allowed zone defenses to be played by teams in the 2001-02 season. It's not a coincidence that Shaq and the Lakers had already won two titles before this change, with the big man dominating his foes with ease. Teams thought they could finally stop the Lakers after the rule change. The reality is, they couldn't. The Lakers still won the title that season, effectively completing the three-peat.
Broadcaster, trash talker
It's quite easy to believe that O'Neal uttered those words. His on-screen rivalry with Barkley says so much about how O'Neal deals with the people when he gets annoyed. Besides this, Shaq's not-so-kind words to the likes of Dwight Howard, JaVale McGee, and Rudy Gobert are proof that if you tick him off, he will come at you.
The funny thing is, all three big men were confused as hell as to why Shaq suddenly started dissing them. Yes, Shaq may be doing it all for the ratings. He's a savvy marketeer, after all. But one couldn't help but surmise that he's taking those things personally. As a former dominant center, O'Neil is harshest to those that came after him.
At least he didn't talk about their wives on national tv.