|Shaq Q&A: ‘Always knew Doc was a great coach’||09.28.10 at 4:27 pm ET|
Newport, R.I. — Shaquille O’Neal speaks maybe a half a notch above whisper. So it took my best Talia Shire to get through the rest of the media and pick up what I could from his (very brief) sit down with the press folks following his first practice with the Celtics Tuesday at Salve Regina University. Here’s what we got:
No chemistry problems with a new team?
“I’ve known a lot of these guys their whole career, spent a lot of time with them during the summer. Getting along with the guys won’t be a problem or a factor. I’ve known these guys since the first day they came into the NBA.”
Does it matter if you start or not at this point of your career?
“Nope, my game is real limited. I know to look for Garnett and to look for my shooters. I’ve always played with great big men and great shooters, so it’s no different.”
How about your first day with Doc Rivers as your head coach? About what you expected?
“I always knew Doc was a great coach, that’s why I called him this summer. I want to end my career with a players coach, I wanted to end my career with a team that’s going to win.”
Doc mentioned that some of the guys weren’t in the condition he had hoped. Is your fitness level a concern?
“I’m happy, I’m cool. There’s a difference between being in shape and in basketball shape. Remember, I’m not going to be playing 35-40 minutes a game, more like 20-25 minutes a game, and I could do that all day. I’m still putting in some extra work, doing some yoga at night so I’ll be ready.”
Just happy to be with this team?
“I’m very delighted for myself and my family. Going into my 19th year, breaking records every day and being different historical teams. I’ve had a very, very unorthodox and illustrious career. Unorthodox and illustrious — two big words in a row.”
|Shaq on D&C: ‘I would have played for free’ in Boston||09.28.10 at 8:49 am ET|
In an appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show, new Celtics center Shaquille O’Neal, who has made no less than $10 million in his last 14 NBA seasons and at least $20 million in his last nine campaigns, said that he had no problem taking a pay cut in excess of 90 percent in order to come to the Celtics. O’Neal signed a two-year deal for approximately $3 million this summer, and he suggested that money was virtually irrelevant in making his decision to join Boston.
“I had other options where the money would have been greater. But this franchise, this team, has a tradition of winning,” O’Neal said. “I’ve been one of the luckiest guys in the history of the game. I’ve had four max deals and one lifetime of play. So money wasn’t an issue. Money will never be an issue. But Danny Ainge had $1 million left, which was the minimum. If I had to, to come here and play, I would have played for free. Doesn’t matter to me.”
O’Neal ‘ who said that he wanted to be called The Big Shamrock while with the Celtics — also discussed whether he will be able to “blend in” in Boston both on and off the court, his bucket list, his experience of last year’s Celtics-Cavaliers playoff series from Cleveland’s perspective and his feelings on Dwight Howard and LeBron James, among several other topics.
A transcript is below. To listen to the complete interview, visit the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
This is Shaquille O’Neal. Don’t mess with Dennis & Callahan, weekdays from 6-10 on the WEEI Sports Radio Network.
Skip the boring basketball questions. Is Boston big enough for your personality?
I always tell people that I was raised Karate Kid style. My father took me many places as a youngster. I started off in Northern New Jersey, born and raised. Went down south to Hinesville, Ga., then to West Germany, then to San Antonio, Tex. I say that to say that I can blend in anywhere.
You probably can’t blend in.
I can blend in. If people are looking for me in Boston, I’ll be in Sudbury. If you’re looking for the Big Shamrock, he’ll be in Sudbury, in the fields of Sudbury.
You’ve settled on the Big Shamrock?
Yes. The Big Shamrock. Yes.
|Video games didn’t kill the basketball star … just ask Rajon Rondo||09.16.10 at 8:49 am ET|
Rajon Rondo checks in from the NBA 2K11 shoot, promoting the latest version of the video game.
(Thanks to Yahoo! Sports)
|An introduction to Doc Rivers’ son, Austin Rivers||09.03.10 at 2:02 pm ET|
The best prep player in the land …
|War of the Worlds: Shaquille O’Neal vs. Justin Bieber||09.02.10 at 12:16 pm ET|
Here you go. Two upset specials involving Shaquille O’Neal and his new best friend, Justin Bieber:
|Former member of the Celtics Rick Fox joins ‘Dancing With the Stars’||09.01.10 at 11:37 pm ET|
Rick Fox is moving further and further from being identified as a former NBA player.
First the former Celtic gets the acting bug, and now he has become a member of the latest edition of ‘Dancing With the Stars.’ According to BoDog.com, the 40-year-old Fox is the fifth-best bet, coming in at 15-2. The 6-foot-7 Fox will be teamed with Cheryl Burke, who is just 5-foot-5. The show premieres Sept. 20.
Other members of the cast include David Hasselhoff, Florence Henderson, Brandi, Bristol Palin, Kurt Warner, Audrina Patridge, Jennifer Grey, Margaret Cho, and Kyle Massey.
|Kobe Bryant says he’s a Laker for life||08.31.10 at 7:02 am ET|
Speaking to Derek Fisher on Jim Rome’s ESPN show, Kobe Bryant said that he plans on staying with the Lakers until the end of his career.
“I’m definitely not playing for another team. It’s hard to say 100 percent, but 99.999 percent sure that I’ll be finishing out my career with the Los Angeles Lakers. I’m happy about that.” (Hat tip to Ball Don’t Lie on Yahoo! Sports)
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