Shaquille O’Neal obviously didn’t sign with the Celtics for the money. They’re paying him the veteran’s minimum of $1.4 million this year. But that doesn't mean that he couldn't have gotten more.
In a recent interview with The Times Picayune, O’Neal said that the Hawks and Pistons each made him much more lucrative offers.
"I could have gotten $8 million from Atlanta and Detroit, but it wasn’t about that," O’Neal told the newspaper. "It was about being somewhere and being seen and winning."
O’Neal, who turns 39 next March, proclaimed that money was the least of his concerns this offseason.
"A lot of people said I only got the league minimum salary, but that’s all right," O’Neal said. "I’m the luckiest guy in the world. I’ve had four max contracts in one lifetime; I don’t care about that little million."
As for his future after Boston, Shaq said it’s unlikely he’ll be able to suit up after his two-year contract is finished.
"It’s going to be my last two years," O’Neal said. "I look at a lot of retired players, and when they shut it down they want to come back. But I’ve been in it for 18 years now, and I’ve had a great, illustrious career."