Tag Archives: Shaquille O’Neal

Wow! Shaq Really Hates Kobe! And He Slams Kareem & Ewing too!

24 Jun

What a night for Shaq!  He manages to slam Kobe, Kareem & Patrick Ewing all in one bad freestyle rap.

Watch this and be prepared to fall off the Shaq bandwagon.  Although, I have to admit the chorus is catchy!

By the way, is it me or is Shaq asking “Kobe, how my @ss tastes?” kind of homo-erotic?

Maybe that explains why their feud has been so personal…

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Finally, Someone Who Makes Me Like Kobe!

24 Jun

Listen, I’m on the record.  I’m no Kobe fan.  Sure, he’s a great player.  It’s just that in my opinion he’s a selfish one.  His immaturity forced the Lakers to deal Shaq prematurely to make Kobe happy.  Only that didn’t make Kobe happy as for years afterward the Lakers couldn’t win.

Now, the Lakers are back.  They are winners again, but couldn’t get over the hump this year and win it all without Shaq.  As someone who has always hoped that the last thought Kobe Bryant would have (many, many years from now) as he passed on from this realm to the next would be “dang, I never did win anything without Shaq…”, I should be happy. 

And I was.  Until I woke up this morning.

What am I confronted with that ruined my appreciation of Kobe’s failure to capture the NBA title this year?  Rapping Shaq!

A secondary question is why does Shaq keep rapping?  Does no one have the guts to tell him he’s no Jay-Z or Eminem?

But, the primary question is why the particular rap he chose?  Shaq says he has no ill will for Kobe and was just freestyling, but it’s interesting that his rap slammed not only Kobe but Patrick Ewing.  Shaq’s lyrics pointed out that Kobe couldn’t win this year without him, which given their long standing feud, you can understand even if it’s not a particularly classy move. 

Why Shaq felt the need to rap Ewing is beyond me.  Sure, Patrick has no rings & Shaq has a boat load.  But, to be fare, I think it’s safe to say that Ewing never played with players as great as Kobe Bryant or Dwayne Wade. 

Do I think Patrick Ewing is the ultimate clutch player?  No.  I’ve live through too many Ewing guarantees that fell short to make that statement.  That said, the point must be made that championships come down to timing and teammates.  Does Patrick win some titles if Jordan doesn’t exist?  Or if he was paired with Kobe or Wade in his prime?  Most likely.

Does Shaquille O’Neal, who I’ve always had a soft spot in my heart for, need to work on his lyrics a bit more before opening his mouth?  Very likely.

PS – my favorite Shaq quote of all time happened when he was still in the early years of his NBA career.  Back then, people used to ask him if he was as good as he was hyped up to be since he hadn’t yet won an NBA Championship himself.

 Shaq’s reply to one question along those lines was that he’d always won every where he’d been.  I loved his reply given that he didn’t win an NCAA Championship at LSU and hadn’t yet won in the pros.  Was he referring to winning a high school title??  I’ll never know, but it was great comedy.

Thanks, Shaq!

D’Antoni Vs. Johnson… Who’s The Right Re-Tread Coach For Your NBA Team?

6 May

In most sports leagues, heck in most corporations, the head jobs are usually tough to crack.  Most sports teams out to hire a head coach go with someone who has done the job before.  The NBA is no exception.  It’s all about cutting down the risks when making a big hire. 

Whenever a vacancy is announced, it’s never long before the management looking to fill that opening is calling up guys who’ve done the job before.  You know, re-treads.  Never mind that often times the re-treads fail miserably on their second or third or fourth chances.  Sort of like most hollywood stars and marriage.

So, it’s always exciting when a new coaching re-tread becomes available to the NBA’s general managers.  For that reason, Phoenix Coach Mike D’Antoni is getting a lot of attention now that his boss GM Steve Kerr (remember his deadly 3 point shot?  He’s been a lot less accurate as a GM so far) is letting him talk to other teams.  Word is the Bulls and Knicks are interested.

My question is why?

First off, and I know it’s a surface thing, but there’s the bad mustache.  Memo to Mike D’Antoni.  1974’s come and gone.  Let go of the ‘stache.

Cheap shot?  Maybe, but do you think today’s young athletes are respecting someone with  ’70s porn facial hair? 

Whatever. 

Let’s move on.  The more important factor is what D’Antoni’s managed to do in Phoenix.  There’s no arguing with the regular season record. It’s pretty impressive.  Speaking of pretty, the style of play he advocates is fun to watch and play. Players and fans alike dig it.  (PS – I’m using 70s slang as a subtle tribute to the D’Antoni mustache)

Yup, you know the problem.  The nice regular season stats and the powerhouse offense has meant nothing come playoff time.  A team that has featured the now departed Sean Marion, Amare Stoudemire, Steve Nash (and his bad hair), Shaq and Grant Hill among others has never made the finals.  Not once.  And if memory serves, they’ve never even made it to a game seven of a conference finals.

As his core ages, the post season woes have gotten worse.  Now, the Suns are making first round exits.

The trouble with D’Antoni is his teams don’t play defense pure and simple.

For my money, if I was a GM looking for rookie re-treads, I’d go with Avery Johnson.  Johnson’s regular season record holds up nicely to D’Antoni’s.  Johnson has coached a team to a finals appearance, even if Dirk and Co. did choke it away. 

Most, impressively, Johnson changed the culture in Big D.  Suddenly, they were focused on D.  Taking the reins from Don Nelson and getting a team to buy into defense is one big accomplishment.  For that, re-tread Johnson deserves a second shot way before Mike D’Antoni.

Pretty basketball be damned.  And besides Avery doesn’t have as cheesy a mustache…

The Sun Is Setting On Not One, But Two NBA Franchises!

30 Apr

This just in.  The Dallas Mavericks have exited the NBA Playoffs in the first round despite mortgaging part of their future to get Jason Kidd out of New Jersey.  You know a certain Mr. Cuban isn’t happy right now.  Change is gonna come…

Soon enough, the Phoenix Suns will be bounced out of the playoffs by the San Antonio Spurs.  Shaq and Dirk will make a very large twosome on America’s golf courses.  Not sure if either actually does play golf, but even if they don’t, after first round exits each will have plenty of time to learn. 

The rumors are flying that the Suns may let head coach Mike D’Antoni go if (or I should say when) his team loses to the Spurs.  The Knicks already have him on their short list of potential coaches.

No matter what happens with D’Antoni.  It’s clear the window is shutting on both franchises.  Sports is all about windows of opportunity. 

Growing up in the 70s, I hated the Pittsburgh Steelers.  I loved Bum Phillips and enjoyed seeing the rise of the Houston Oilers as a legitimate threat to the Steelers’ AFC dominance.

I remember after one year, in which the Oilers came close but couldn’t overcome the Steelers, Phillips had a great quote about what he expected going into the next season.  Bum said something like “last year we knocked on the door.  This year we’re going to break it down”.

To me, Bum’s quote is what it’s all about.  To win a championship, you’ve got to build a team of complementary players, give them time to jell and hope for a heck of a lot of luck.  In Houston’s case, the window closed without a championship for either Phillips or Earl Campbell, the most exciting runner I ever saw as a kid.  That doesn’t mean Bum wasn’t right.  It takes time to win championships.

Looking at Dallas and Phoenix, I’m struck by the same thing.  Churn.  Dallas is certainly more guilty.  But, each NBA franchise has continued to tweak their roster downward.  Both the Suns and Mavericks have been good for a while, yet neither has had a enough to break through.

Neither franchise has been able to resist the temptation to try to improve their roster.  Yet, it seems to me, each team keeps weakening their squad with each successive trade.  Dallas is now stuck with a very old looking Jason Kidd (especially in comparison to Chris Paul) at the point, while Dirk’s not getting any younger.

As for Phoenix, I absolutely never understood the Sean Marion trade.  He was such a big part of that team and still so young.  How do you give him up for an old Shaq?  Now, Phoenix is stuck with two aging superstars in Shaq and the still very effective Steve Nash. 

The sun is setting in Phoenix and the window is closing in Dallas.

Too bad.  I would have liked to see either franchise finally break through.  I’m pretty sure Bum Phillip agrees.