Basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal, aka Shaq, recently admitted that he ring chased during the end of his career to catch now-deceased superstar Kobe Bryant in terms of number of National Basketball Association (NBA) championship rings.
SHAQ HAS WON FOUR CHAMPIONSHIPS OVER HIS NBA CAREER
Shaq played for six different teams over his 19-year career in the NBA. He has won four championships during his career. His first three came between 2000 and 2002 during a fascinating, dominant run as part of the Los Angeles Lakers. He was judged the Most Valuable Player of the tournament in 2000.
Later, he left the Lakers amidst a feud with fellow superstar Kobe Bryant. In 2006, he won his fourth and final Championship as part of the Miami Heat squad. He has been selected to play in an NBA All-Star match on 15 occasions, and has been the Most Valuable Player of those matches on three occasions.
The Basketball icon recently discussed his “respectful competition” with Kobe Bryant. On his The Big Podcast, Shaq noted how throughout his NBA career he has tried to reach Bryant in terms of number of championships. In his last two years, he moved to Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics respectively, which he notes was due to his desire to win his 5th championship ring and catch up with Bryant.
“In my last three years, I was traded to championship chance, ’cause if I can get five, he got five, but the fact that he got five and I got four drives me crazy,” the 7’1″ legend, who has also sporadically entered the entertainment sector, including the squared circle, confessed. Unfortunately, he couldn’t fulfill his desire and retired with four titles.
Shaq admits he ring chased with the Cavs and Celtics because he wanted to catch Kobe in rings 😅
— NBACentral (@TheDunkCentral) February 13, 2024
KOBE AND SHAQ HELPED LA LAKERS SECURE A THREE-PEAT BETWEEN 2000 AND 2002
As a young star alongside comparative senior Shaquille O’Neal, Bryant contributed to a dominant Los Angeles Lakers dynasty, securing three consecutive titles from 2000 to 2002 with his electrifying scoring and lockdown defense. Years later, he embraced the “Black Mamba” persona, embodying relentless focus and leading a revamped Lakers team to glory in 2009. His legacy was cemented in 2010, overcoming injuries and delivering clutch performances in a thrilling Finals series against the Boston Celtics.