Skip to main content

Robert Horry has no doubt who's the better player in the Shaq vs. Hakeem debate

Robert Horry has no doubt who's the better player in the Shaq vs. Hakeem debate

Robert Horry played with both guys in their MVP season, and he has no doubt which of the two is the better player.

Nikola Jokić is the first center MVP since Shaquille O'Neal in 2000. If we look back even further back, since Moses Malone in '82/'83, only four centers have won MVP awards - that's 4 times in almost 4 decades. Hakeem Olajuwon in '93/'94, David Robinson in '94/'95, Shaq in '99/'00, and Nikola Jokić in two consecutive seasons. The one in '94/'95 was particularly entertaining because Hakeem pulled an MJ, "took it personally," and showed everyone who should've won the MVP that year.

For Horry, there is no doubt Hakeem was better

So with all due respect, between Hakeem, Robinson, and Shaq, The Admiral ranks no.3 in my book. But who should I put no.1 when choosing between Hakeem and Shaq? Robert Horry played with both guys in their MVP season, and he has no doubt which of the two is the better player. So immediately after being asked the question, Horry said this.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

“Hakeem was better. Shaq was more dominant, but Hakeem was better.” 

Robert Horry, The Ryen Rusillo Podcast

Ryen Rusillo, who asked this question, just stared at the camera for a moment - the answer came a lot quicker than you'd think. Horry knew he would have to expand on that a little bit.

“I think Dream had more talent. Shaq had handles, but Dream had a little bit better handles. Dream could shoot free throws, and we all know about Shaq’s free throws. He had a fadeaway. Shaq was just brute strength, just dunk on you, and get out of the way.”

Robert Horry, The Ryen Rusillo Podcast

Hakeem remains an underrated superstar

I personally 100% agree with Horry and the point he made. Hakeem didn't get to play against Shaq in his prime, but we saw the Dream play against physically dominant centers - Robinson and Ewing - and have his way with them. So take a moment and think of how all the great players from 2000 went to Hakeem, a center, to develop their footwork! Olajuwon wasn't just skilled for a center; at 7 feet, he was one of the most versatile big men in NBA history with an array of moves that we rarely see today in the post. 

That makes Hakeem one of the best players of his era and in the history of the NBA. But, given the fact how little we talk about him, it also makes him one of the most underrated superstars at the same time.

Mike Malone believes Jamal Murray is back on track for the Denver Nuggets

“I’m excited to go prove myself again.” - Jamal Murray’s return will further the Denver Nuggets’ title ambitions

Jamal Murray is just happy to be back from injury, reiterates desire to prove himself again

North Carolina Tar Heels guard Michael Jordan vs. Indiana Hoosiers guard Dan Dakich

"Here’s what happened with that" — Dan Dakich on the story that he vomited after learning Michael Jordan was his assignment

Dan Dakich spills the real reason why he vomited before he faced Michael Jordan and North Carolina.

Miami Heat small forward LeBron James works the baseline against New Jersey Nets shooting guard DeShawn Stevenson

“We was both making a fool of ourselves” — Why DeShawn Stevenson apologized for beefing with LeBron James

Unlike most players, Stevenson evolved to see the bigger picture, and apologized to LeBron.