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Jerry West Choked Shaquille O'Neal To Teach Him A Big Lesson About Patience And Winning: "You Dummy, I Went To The Finals Seven Times Before I Won, Your Time Is Gonna Come"

Jerry West Choked Shaquille O'Neal To Teach Him A Big Lesson About Patience And Winning: "You Dummy, I Went To The Finals Seven Times Before I Won, Your Time Is Gonna Come"

Shaquille O'Neal, in his 19-year career, played with six different teams. While he had some successful stints with the likes of Orlando Magic and the Miami Heat, O'Neal is most well known for his exploits as the superstar of the Los Angeles Lakers.

Joining the side in 1996, Shaq had the time of his life with the Lakers winning an MVP trophy, three NBA championships, and three NBA Finals trophies as well.

Although he is best known for his starring role in the Lakers' three-peat, things did not start that well for the big man when he joined the Purple and Gold. While O'Neal was putting up solid numbers across the board since he joined the team, the Lakers did not have a consistent second star who could support the dynamic center.

This led to the Lakers finishing up with disappointing records or crashing out early in the NBA playoffs repeatedly. Shaq remembered one such incident where he let his frustrations get the best of him.

"I'm in the bathroom and I'm tearing a bear from up. I ripped three urinals out the wall, I ripped two toilets up, I ripped a couple of toilet doors, and bust up a big color TV."

O'Neal then explained how Lakers' legend Jerry West humbled him and gave him a lesson about being patient and trusting the process.

"Jerry West comes in, ‘What the f were you doing' and I’m like I'm tired of losing, so he grabs me like right here and pins me up. I guess he came in to address the team, but he heard me and then he just came in like a gangster. He's just pinned me and said, ‘You dummy, I went to the finals seven times before I won, your time is gonna come.’ So I was like the great Jerry West once lost seven times before he won one. I don't feel so bad."

The wisdom given by Jerry West certainly worked for Shaq. Although he initially couldn't make much of an impact in the playoffs, the emergence of a young star Kobe Bryant changed it all. 

Shaq, who was frustrated with the lack of success with the Lakers, now had a co-star he could rely on. This partnership turned out to be legendary as the Purple and Gold had a three-peat with the duo leading the way.