Shaquille O’Neal made an interesting statement about what could have happened if he hadn’t left Kobe Bryant and the Lakers back in 2004.
O’Neal, a Lakers and NBA legend, said he and Bryant could have won seven titles if they remained together in LA.
“Seven (championships). The reason I got traded isn’t because of the Kobe beef. They wanted me to take less money. I said, ‘I’m not doing that.’ I had money, I should’ve said, ‘Alright I’ve raised you enough, its your team now.
He was a guy who wanted it right away. And we all understand pecking order. It was my team. That ain’t about to happen. But I saw that he had something in him.
This is where I wish a little more tactful. Egos get in the way…a lot of unnecessary stuff that shouldn’t have happened, happened, because of the ego, and it was probably my fault,” O’Neal told Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson in ”All the Smoke’ podcast, via Eurohoops.net.
O’Neal and Bryant led the Lakers to three straight titles (2000-2002). Bryant went on to win another two titles with the Lakers (2009, 2010). Meanwhile, O’Neal won the 2006 NBA championship with the Miami Heat.
Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna died in a helicopter crash in January 26, 2020.