Shaquille O’Neal knows a thing or two about championships.
The Hall of Famer won three straight NBA titles while he was with the Los Angeles Lakers and another with the Miami Heat. That said, he told ESPN’s Ian Begley he got greedy toward the end of his career for more.
And he doesn’t want LeBron James to do the same thing.
“My problem toward the end of my career was I was trying to shut everybody up and I was greedy (for more championships)” O’Neal told Begley. “After I got to three (titles), everybody was saying I couldn’t get another. So I got four. After I got the fourth, they were saying I couldn’t get another one. So I was trying to make quick stops to get it. Phoenix, Cleveland, Boston.”
Many expect James to opt out of his contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers this offseason after getting swept in the NBA Finals by the Golden State Warriors. But O’Neal said at this point in James’ career, chasing championships isn’t worth it.
“Somebody told me a long time ago — they said your book is already set (before the later stages of your career). You can add index pages toward the end, but your book is already set. So LeBron’s book is already set,” O’Neal said. “He done already passed up legends; he done already made his mark — he has three rings.
“His mentality now is probably: I want to get four before (Warriors guard) Steph (Curry) does,” O’Neal continued. “That’s probably his mentality now. But if I was him, I wouldn’t be trying to get four, five and six because it ain’t going to matter. It’s just something else to talk about, something else to add to the pages. He’s a legend, talked about as who is the best between he and Michael Jordan, so he’s set.”
Strong words from a legend himself.
James has until June 29 to decide whether he’ll stay in Cleveland or test the free agent market. And although The King already has etched his name in NBA history, he’ll likely be hungry for more championships before calling it a career, whether Shaq agrees or not.
Thumbnail photo via David Richard/USA TODAY Sports Images
Powered by WordPress.com VIP