Shaquille O'Neal may have been a dominant force on the basketball court, but he still had to deal with constant verbal assault from the fans.
As a superstar player and multiple-time champion, Shaq has seen and heard some ridiculous stuff from hostile crowds.
In a segment on 'The Big Podcast,' O'Neal revealed how he dealt with those crowds:
“Sacramento was probably the toughest city. We go out before the games, and people would be talking about something and I said bro, I’m at like if I go out or something. But like bruh, say what you wanna say about the game, I’m eating these pancakes. You f*cking touch me, I’m gonna break you mother f*cking jaw. I mean I either just make them shut up by whoever that player by busting their ass or busting his ass. Or I’m gonna throw a ball over there and I’m gonna dive on em.”
As a 7-1, 300+ pound machine, Shaq isn't someone you want to provoke. Not only is he big and tough, but he's not afraid to battle it out against anyone.
Even Charles Oakley has his problems against him during his playing days.
“Shaq was tough," Oakley said. "He was just big, and the one thing he liked to do was dunk on you. He never dunked on me, but he was a force, though. I give him credit. Skill-wise, Kevin McHale in the post, Tim Duncan. Karl Malone, but he just flopped too much for me.”
The Big Diesel stands today as the epitome of old-school bigs. His interior game was unstoppable to the time and is still recognized years later as one of the greatest individual careers in NBA history.
Today, the modern-day big man has changed in a lot of ways. Many centers have either migrated to the perimeter or have become completely obsolete, rendering much of that aggressive post-play a thing of the past.
Nevertheless, O'Neal is still around to remind us all of how things used to be and the way he bullied his opponents both on and off the floor.