Blog Entry

Shaquille O'Neal tweets: 'I'm retiring'

Posted on: June 1, 2011 3:01 pm
Edited on: August 19, 2011 8:57 pm
Boston Celtics center Shaquille O'Neal says that he is retiring on Twitter. Posted by Ben Golliver

Boston Celtics center Shaquille O'Neal, long the oversized center of the NBA's attention, posted a simple message on Twitter on Wednesday: "im retiring."

That message included a link to a video in which O'Neal, seated at an office desk, addresses a camera. "We did it," O'Neal says smiling. "Nineteen years, baby. I want to thank you very much. That's why I'm telling you first that I'm about to retire. Love you. Talk to you soon."

Here's the video via YouTube user zeblowtorch. (Hat tip: The Basketball Jones.)

O'Neal, who is 39 years old, saw his 2010-2011 campaign with the Boston Celtics marred by injuries. He played in just 37 games, averaging a career-low 9.2 points and 4.8 rebounds. Hobbled by an Achilles injury, O'Neal was able to play just 12 minutes in the NBA playoffs and the Celtics were bounced in the Eastern Conference semifinals by the Miami Heat.

Shaq: The Legacy
Stats (All-Time List)
  • Games: 1,207 (23rd)
  • Minutes: 41,918 (17th)
  • Points: 28,596 (5th)
  • Rebounds: 13,099 (12th)
  • Blocks: 2,732 (7th)
  • First overall pick, 1992 Draft
  • Rookie of the Year, 1992-93
  • NBA MVP, 1999-00
  • Four NBA Championships
  • 15-time NBA All-Star
  • 3-time NBA Finals MVP
  • 2-time NBA Scoring Champion
  • Career Salary: $292,198,327

A spokesperson for the Celtics said O'Neal had not yet informed the franchise about his plans to retire. "To my knowledge, he has not informed any of us that he's retiring," Celtics spokesman Jeff Twiss told the Associated Press. O'Neal had a player option for the 2011-2012 season worth $1.4 million which he will forego if and when he files his official retirement papers with the NBA. Roughly two weeks ago, O'Neal's mother predicted that he would return to play for Boston next season.
O'Neal's career accomplishments make him a certain first-ballot Hall of Famer. A 15-time All-Star, 4-time NBA champion and the 1999-2000 MVP, O'Neal was perhaps the most physically dominant center the game has ever seen.

The Associated Press sums up his career arc nicely.
One of the most charismatic players in NBA history, O'Neal was a franchise-saver when the Orlando Magic made him the No. 1 overall pick in the 1992 draft. He took them from the lottery to the playoffs in two years, and then led them to the NBA Finals in his third year before they were swept by the Houston Rockets.

O'Neal, 39, signed with the Los Angeles Lakers in 1996 and had his greatest success there, winning three titles alongside Kobe Bryant and coach Phil Jackson. But amid tension between O'Neal and Bryant over credit for the team's success, O'Neal was traded to the Miami Heat in the summer of 2004, fresh off a loss to the Detroit Pistons in the Finals.

After 3 1/2 years in Miami, a tenure that included his fourth NBA championship, O'Neal became a veteran-for-hire, moving to Phoenix and then Cleveland and finally Boston. But he couldn't deliver another title for Steve Nash and Amar'e Stoudemire with the Suns, with LeBron James with the Cavaliers or with the Celtics' Big Three of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen.

At each stop, he endeared himself to the fans and his new teammates with his effervescent smile and playful attitude, including the habit of adopting a new nickname that he felt embodied his role with his new team. In Phoenix he was the "Big Shaqtus"; in Boston, the "Big Shamroq."
O'Neal leaves the game as the NBA's No. 5 all-time scorer, No. 12 all-time rebounder and No. 7 all-time in blocks. His career field goal percentage of 58.2 percent ranks him second all-time. His career averages: 23.7 points, 10.9 rebounds and 2.3 blocks.


Since: Mar 20, 2007
Posted on: June 2, 2011 12:10 am

Shaquille O'Neal tweets: 'I'm retiring'

An LSU fighting Tiger till the end.  You will be missed Shaq!

Since: Aug 1, 2008
Posted on: June 1, 2011 11:41 pm

Shaquille O'Neal tweets: 'I'm retiring'

Anyone else hope he becomes an analyst?  Him and Barkley would be hilarious but wouldn't mind seeing him do his own thing on another channel.


Since: Apr 27, 2011
Posted on: June 1, 2011 10:32 pm

Shaquille O'Neal tweets: 'I'm retiring'

Anyone else hope he becomes an analyst?  Him and Barkley would be hilarious but wouldn't mind seeing him do his own thing on another channel.

Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: June 1, 2011 9:49 pm

Shaquille O'Neal tweets: 'I'm retiring'

Shaquille O'Neal is one of the best centers and players in NBA history. Since I have been watching basketball O'Neal is the best center I have every seen and he will be in the Hall of Fame in just his first ballot. I wish O'Neal the best of luck in his next chapter of his life and I will always remeber him as the Big Shaqtus here in Phoenix.

Since: Sep 12, 2006
Posted on: June 1, 2011 9:36 pm

Shaquille O'Neal tweets: 'I'm retiring'

Does this mean Shaq will become a police officer full time? or will he go back to his very successful rapping career?, or will there be sequels to Shazam? or Good Burger? God I hope so. Tell us Shaq!

Since: Jan 19, 2011
Posted on: June 1, 2011 9:15 pm

Shaquille O'Neal tweets: 'I'm retiring'

Finally you grizzly adams looking mofo! Good riddance this retirement is long over due.

Since: Dec 31, 2007
Posted on: June 1, 2011 7:05 pm

LARRY are a dope

I am 42 and whether Kobe was there before or after Shaq is not anyones point you stat freak.

Take one away from the other and compare.  Duncan???  He took advantage of a center free league and was tough.

Please stop with the free throw line.  Defense, post play, passing and presence....there is no other fear.  Jordan had that feel.  He is hands down the best.  Shaq is not the best, but big man...he has an argument for the best ever....go swallow your stat book, you never played the game,

Since: Feb 16, 2007
Posted on: June 1, 2011 6:28 pm

Shaquille O'Neal tweets: 'I'm retiring'

He should have retired after winning the title in 2006 when it was obvious he would never have the same impact he once did.  His career averages which are awesome anyways would have been through the roof had he retired then.  His FT shooting prevented him from being considered the best of all time.  The guy would have averaged 40 ppg for a few seasons had he been an 80% FT shooter because it would have changed the way teams could play him (I say teams, because in his prime nobody in NBA history could so much as bother him).

He came into the league in the dominant center era with Ewing/Hakeem/Drobinson still in their primes, and he put up huge numbers.  Watching him dismantle a team all by himself in the early 2000's is something we may never see again.  Never has there been such a combination of size/strength/explosiveness, and it was sad to see how ineffective he'd become late in his career.  I miss the old Shaq, but he goes down as a top 5 all-time player easily.   

Since: Feb 10, 2010
Posted on: June 1, 2011 6:12 pm

Shaquille O'Neal tweets: 'I'm retiring'

Shaq stated that on his first day of retirement he is going to eat Rajon Rondo.

Since: Jul 21, 2008
Posted on: June 1, 2011 6:09 pm

Shaquille O'Neal tweets: 'I'm retiring'

I wasn't always a fan of his but no doubt he always entertained.

There will never be another Diesel.

So long, Shaq.

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