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Shaquille O'Neal Says He Never Wanted To Dunk, Until His Father Smacked Him: "You Ain't No Magic, Be Shaquille O'Neal"

Shaquille O’Neal’s Dunk On Chris Dudley Is The Most Disrespectful Dunk Of All Time

Shaquille O'Neal is one of the most dominant players of all time, a menace when he attacked the rim, terrifying players on his way to the basket. He was one of the most spectacular in-game dunkers, but Shaq initially didn't want to be like that. 

He was inspired by Magic Johnson during his early days and wanted to model his game after the Los Angeles Lakers point guard. However, not everybody liked that idea, making Shaq change his style of play and become the violent dunker that dominated the NBA during the 90s and 2000s. 

During a conversation with Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson on SHOWTIME's 'All the Smoke,' Shaq revealed that he didn't want to dunk the ball and used different methods to score. All that changed when his late step-father stepped in and made him realize he wasn't Magic Johnson, he was Shaquille O'Neal. 

“I go to a small high school in Texas. Our team is terrible. I made the team so I don’t give a sh*t. I started to get a little confident and then my dad take me to see John Koncak. Everything just changed overnight for me… I’m not doing Kareem… I like this Magic hat. So I’m working on my little handles, right? Then when I first started dunking, I never went to dunk… I finger roll it, I miss, my father comes out… *signals* timeout. I’m cool, he takes me aside… fu**in up? I said, ‘I’m just working on my little Magic’, Whap! Smacks me, ain’t no Magic, be Shaquille O’Neal. That’s when I started dunking. The reason why I dunk so fierce, because I was so angry, I wanted to tear the rim down.”

That conversation changed Shaq's life and made him one of the greatest centers of all time. Following that, he became the strong force that we all know now. O'Neal would be a complete legend with his dunks, destroying rings, recording the most disrespectful dunk of all time

He was a master at that, which is why he was so disappointed in the 2022 Slam Dunk contest. Perhaps if Shaq talked with players like his father talked to him, things would have been different last Saturday.