Shaq on D&H: ‘It is all about winning’
|08.10.10 at 12:34 pm ET|
Shaquille O’Neal joined the Dale & Holley show Tuesday following his press conference to discuss signing with the Celtics and how he is excited to join a franchise that he considers “rich in the tradition of winning.” O’Neal explained that he and coach Doc Rivers met in Orlando, not in Italy. “Actually it wasn’t Italy, he lives in a place that has Italy in it in, Orlando,” O’Neal said.
On meeting Doc Rivers in “Italy”:
“We met and we had a conversation. He said, ‘Big guy, [what are] you going to do,’ and I said, ‘I want to play for a winner.’ He said, ‘Well, we’re winners,’ [and] I said, ‘Well, lets talk about it.’ So we talked about it. I had dinner with him and his lovely family and he said what he expected from me and I told him what I expected, I think it will be a good fit. I’ve been a winner my whole career [and] I wanted to play my last two years with a franchise that’s known for winning, a franchise that’s rich in the tradition of winning.”
On LeBron James’ “Decision”:
“I don’t really have an opinion on it. I just know that everyone is going to handle their situation different. Me and LeBron are friends, we grew real close last year and I just wish him well. I don’t have an opinion on that.”
On playing with the Cavaliers last season:
“It was fun. LeBron was a great player. He’s a team player, he kept everybody alive and I don’t think it was any problems, we just fell short. The whole year despite my injury we stayed in first, we stayed at the top, did everything we were supposed to do except win. So we just fell short.”
On playing with Kendrick Perkins:
“He’s a tough kid, tough competitor, not going to back down. [He’s a] hard-nosed player. That was kind of unfortunate what happened to him last year, but myself and Jermaine [O’Neal] and Kevin [Garnett], we’re going to hold it down until he comes back, and when he comes back it’s going to be much more harder for us to get beat.”
On teaming up with Kevin Garnett:
“[We’ve] always been great friends. … I think if he had gotten past us when he was in Minnesota he possibly could have won, but he was all out there by himself. It was Kobe [Bryant] and myself and Rick Fox and Robert Horry, but we had a lot of great battles. Then he came to Boston and got one and now I’m sure he is hungry for one more.”
On the Celtics franchise history:
“Their franchise is used to winning, and for my last two years I want to be associated with winners, I want to play with winners. I could have gone somewhere and took all the money and been with a so-so team, but I decided to sacrifice and just play with a winner [because] at the end of the day it is all about winning nothing else. You only remember winners.”
On giving Glen “Big Baby” Davis and Paul “The Truth” Pierce their nicknames:
“Every new player in the league, I’ve given them their name.”
On what kind of shape he’s in:
“Good enough to whup you. … I’ll beat you in whatever it is, buddy. Whatever it is. Rowing, swimming, baseball, whatever.”
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