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Shaquille O’Neal to host comedy tour 06.20.11 at 1:22 pm ET
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Shaquille O’€™Neal, no stranger to comedic roles himself, is set to host the All-Star Comedy Jam tour, The (Memphis) Commercial Appeal reported.

The tour begins on Sept. 9 in Memphis. Tickets go on sale at www.aeglive.com on Friday at 10 a.m.

“I played with many all-stars on the court and laughed with these all-stars off the court,” O’Neal said Thursday. “I’m happy to present this hand-picked lineup as the first Shaq All-Star tour.”

The tour will also be filmed for the “All-Star Comedy Jam Backstage Pass” reality show.

In unrelated O’Neal news, Robert Ross, the man beaten and kidnapped allegedly due to his possession of a sex tape of O’Neal, testified in court Monday. Ross testified that security cameras at his home recorded O’Neal having sex, but the footage was then recorded over.

Hip Hop Wired’s C. Vernon Coleman II wrote that Ross reiterated his claim that the seven members of the Main Street Crips on trial said they attacked him because of the tape. He said one gang member mentioned O’Neal and business partner Mark Stevens as having sent them.

Both O’Neal and Stevens have denied involvement with the incident, and to date neither have been charged.

Testimony will resume when the hearing commences on July 6.

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In LA court, kidnap victim explains ties to Shaquille O’Neal 06.15.11 at 12:20 pm ET
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A strange trial is taking place in Los Angeles, and it has a connection to Shaquille O’Neal.

Robert Ross, who claims he did business with O’Neal and dated his ex-wife, allegedly was kidnapped and beaten by a group of gang members three years ago as part of the gang’s attempt to retrieve a sex tape of O’Neal with other women, according to preliminary testimony. Prosecutors, however, have indicated they have no evidence such a tape existed and said O’Neal is not involved in the case.

According to a Los Angeles Times report on the case, Ross testified that he is a former member of the Main Street Mafia Crips gang who became a music promoter. After becoming friends with O’Neal and trying to bring musical acts to O’Neal’s record label, Ross claims, he got into a financial dispute with the player’s recording firm and then announced that he had the sex tape.

Prosecutors have charged Ladell Rowles, purportedly the leader of the gang, with directing members to kidnap, beat and rob Ross.

Read More: Robert Ross, Shaquille O'Neal,
Shaq thanks Doc Rivers at retirement press conference 06.03.11 at 1:56 pm ET
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During his retirement press conference at his home in Orlando, Shaquille O’Neal made special mention of his time with the Celtics, especially coach Doc Rivers. O’Neal singled out Rivers and Phil Jackson as the pro coaches who helped him the most.

“Playing for Doc Rivers this year was very, very special,” O’Neal said. “We had a lot of talent on the team but Doc Rivers always, always focused on the team. Thank you Doc.”

O’Neal said that he would have needed surgery on his Achilles in order to play again and that would have kept him out nine months. “The best solution was going in and cleaning it up with a nine-month recovery,” O’Neal said. “I thought it was good business to let Danny [Ainge] know right away so that he could get some young talent. It’s a beautiful organization. They still got a lot left.”

Shaq added, “I was really down on myself because I went up there with one mission only and I felt like I let the city down. I didn’t want that to happen again.”

O’Neal began his press conference by saying, “I never thought this day would come that father time would catch up with Shaquille O’Neal.”

He found time to make a joke at the Knicks expense after they unexpectedly let Donnie Walsh go earlier on Friday. He picked up a cell phone and said, “You want me to come up and apply for the Knick general manager job? That was the president of the Knicks. He wanted me to fly up after the press conference.”

Read More: Doc Rivers, Shaquille O'Neal,
Follow Shaquille O’Neal press conference live on WEEI at 12:51 pm ET
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Shaquille O’Neal, who called in to the Dennis & Callahan show Friday morning to discuss his past, present and future, is scheduled to hold his retirement announcement from his Orlando home Friday at 1 p.m. Listen to WEEI for live coverage of the press conference, and check out WEEI.com later for reaction from the announcement.

The press conference also will be available via video streaming at celtics.com.

O’Neal, who implied earlier this week that he’s been offered a job by ESPN, is wrapping up a stellar 19-year NBA career that included one injury-plagued season in Boston.

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Transcript of Shaquille O’Neal on D&C: ‘I didn’t want to let the people of Boston down two years in a row’ at 11:06 am ET
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Future Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal called in to the Dennis & Callahan show Friday morning, the day of his scheduled press conference at his Orlando house to formally announce his retirement after one injury-plagued season with the Celtics and 19 years in the NBA.

Asked if this is a happy or sad day, O’Neal said: “A little bit of both. Business-wise, I felt that the Boston organization and the people of Boston treated me very, very well. I could have gotten a little minor surgery and then been out for nine months, but then we would have been in the same situation again, everybody sitting around waiting for me. So, I thought it was great business to let Danny [Ainge] go out and get some younger talent.”

Added O’Neal: “I didn’t want to let the people of Boston down two years in a row.”

Asked if he’s 100 percent certain that he will stay retired, Shaq coyly replied: “For now, yes.”

Following is a transcript of the conversation. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

The big question is where does Shaq appear on the Mount Rushmore of big men in the NBA. Is that a question you want to deal with?

I never really deal with it. For me, coming from where I come from, how I was taught to play the game ‘€” my father used to mention all those great names to me. Like, “Son, when you block a shot, don’t show off and knock it out of bounds. Keep in inbounds, like the great Bill Russell. Son, I need you to dominate. I need them to change the rules for you like they with Wilt Chamberlain. You know what, son, the jump hook is nice. I need you to shoot the little hook like Kareem [Abdul-Jabbar].”

So, for me to have my name mentioned next to those guys ‘€” and you can’t forget Chief, Robert Parish. He was great. too. So, for me to have my name mentioned up there, it’s a blessing.

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Read More: Bill Russell, Danny Ainge, Dwight Howard, Jermaine O'Neal
Shaquille O’Neal announces plans to retire 06.01.11 at 3:34 pm ET
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In true Shaquille O’Neal style, he announced his plans to retire via a video on Tout. His message was short and sweet:

“We did it, 19 years baby,” O’Neal said. “I want to thank you very much. That’s why I’m telling you first: I’m about to retire.”

O’Neal played in 37 games in his one season with the Celtics. He only appeared in one regular-season game after Feb. 1 because of an Achilles injury, and in that game he lasted just five minutes against the Pistons. O’Neal was then able to play in just two playoff games for a total of 12 minutes.

When he was able to play, O’Neal played a vital role in the Celtics early-season success. Without Kendrick Perkins, who was rehabbing from knee surgery, and Jermaine O’Neal, who had his own injury problems, Shaq averaged nine points and five rebounds and shot 67 percent from the floor. The Celtics went 27-9 with him in the starting lineup.

His injury had a devastating effect on the Celtics’ title chances. At the time, team president Danny Ainge made the Perkins trade, he did so with the assumption that O’Neal would be back soon to man the center position.

“Shaq brought us our best offense that we’€™ve had in four years when he was healthy and playing well,” Ainge said. “We had every indication from Shaq, from doctors and trainers that Shaq would be healthy and should have no issues by trade deadline. That changed. Maybe we should have taken his age into more consideration.”

O’Neal’s decision to retire has little effect on the Celtics plans for next season. He has a player option that would pay him on the veteran minimum so the team won’t see any benefit in the way of cap relief.

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Kevin Garnett: Celtics didn’t reach their potential 05.16.11 at 1:21 pm ET
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Kevin Garnett was the only member of the Celtics‘ Big Four not to address the media following the team’s meltdown in a Game 5 loss to the Heat that effectively ended the 2010-11 NBA season in Boston last week. Now, five days later, Garnett addressed the C’s demise in his Anta blog. Here’s the entry …

As you know, we were knocked out of the playoffs by Miami. It’s unfortunate that we are out and in my mind didn’t reach our potential. Taking the last couple of days to think about things and the season was long. Their were ups and downs all season and dealing with teammates, leaving teammates, gaining teammates. Long hours, flights, practices, workouts, etc. Another season under my belt, but not satisfying. I’ll be getting back to the “lab” (workouts and court work) to work on my craft, so I can keep improving. I will be working on my skills and constantly trying to get better.

Quick shout out to my man [Shaquille O'Neal], who is the best.  He worked hard all season, but couldn’t get his Achilles right.

Amazing to think that I was playing with so many potential HOF (Hall of Famers). I will remember these times, on and off the court.  This will be a memorable season!!!

Thank you all so much for your constant support and encouragement throughout the season. Hanging in with us through the ups and downs of the season. Your support gets me through and pushes me to be better. I will be back in China some time in July or August, so stay tuned. I met so many of you all last summer that it will be exciting to meet more.

Keep reaching higher and thanks to all my supporters.

my 2011 season is officially over.

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Read More: Boston Celtics, Doc Rivers, Kevin Garnett, Shaquille O'Neal
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