There was a time when this reality would’ve made Shaq lash out at everyone in the locker room, but at 38-years old, he picks his battles more carefully and realizes that there are barely any left to even bother fighting.
O’Neal says he is happy to play a minor, supporting role on the juggernaut Celtics, content to bask in the security of his legacy.
From Yahoo! come the hilarious quotes:
“I don’t worry about my legacy,” O’Neal said. “I look at it like this: There are certain guys that have legacies, and I’ve [expletive] tripled and quadrupled what the [expletive] they did, like Bill Walton. That’s how I look at it. Real talk. Everybody has a pen, so everybody’s going to say otherwise. But I know guys that got one [championship] and they got $60,000 speaking gigs off what they did 30 years ago. My legacy is straight. I don’t worry about it.
“I’ve prepared myself for [the end of his career] when I came in. For like the first 10 years my father would tell me, ‘You need to own some [stuff].’ I said, ‘Why? I make a lot of money.’ He said, ‘What if you hurt your knee or something?’ From then I’ve been in business mode. So I’ve been thinking about the day I’m done playing for a long time. And I’ll be fine. It will be real easy, real easy, real easy. Too easy.”
The day Shaquille O’Neal walks away from the game will be a very sad one. But it’s not all bad news: O’neal plans to stay in the public eye by writing a book and working on television as an analyst.