Wednesday, June 20th, 2012 at 9:40 am  |  16 responses

Shaquille O’Neal Was Mad the Dream Team Selected Christian Laettner Over Him

Quite understandably, Shaq was beside himself when he found out that Christian Laettner took the final roster spot on the legendary Dream Team. But, 20 years later, O’Neal has come around on the decision. Per the Mike Wise Show (via SRI): “On the heels of celebrating the 1992 Dream Team, they only picked one college player on that team, Christian Laettner. Did you want to be on that team? Take us back to that: ‘I was pissed off. I was jealous. But then I had to come to the realization that I was a more explosive, more powerful player, but Christian Laettner was a little bit more fundamentally sound than I was. Plus he stayed all four years and graduated. … I just think it helped me grow as a player.’”

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  • crooklyn

    Wait, wasn’t that the year shaq “stepped” on an opposing player in a game. I remember watching some talk show back then and them saying that added to the decision not to include shaq.

  • Stu

    uhh, big guy – he did this to round off one of the greatest collegiate careers of all time.. things worked out OK for you.. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gCb9FcHBIYE

  • Dirtybird

    I remember Christian doing it to someone too, maybe not the same year though.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    Yeah, Laettner was one of the best college ballers ever…at that time it made sense.

  • http://www.twitter.com/_dfrance dfrance21

    ^People lose sight of that and tend to judge this situation based on his NBA career, but in 1992 if they had to select 1 college ball player, Laettner was the no brainer choice.

  • monkeyball

    But why pick Laettner over Dominique or Isaiah Thomas? I’m old enough to remember THAT made no sense even then.

  • Wixurrs

    because they wanted one amateur on the team. and the above people are correct– Laettner at the time was already a legend.

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    They shoulda went with Shaq or Zo. Laettner didn’t deserve it after stomping on that Kentucky player.

  • bdogg

    shaq should have been added to the college all stars and we send them as the “b” team thou magic and jordan both said webber, ghill and penny were better than lattner. not hating just stating the facts!

  • MikeC.

    At the time Laettner was thought to be coming off the greatest college career of all time. Even though he didn’t do much in the pro’s, Laettner is a Hall of Famer based on his NCAA career. If they had to give a spot to an amateur, Laettner was the obvious choice then. The reasoning for not taking Isiah was made pretty clear in the documentary. My opinion on why they didn’t take Dominique was that he wasn’t a good enough shooter from deep. They needed Mullin’s shooting more than ‘Nique’s finishing at the rim. If they didn’t take Mullin, then Bird would have been the only killer shooter against the zones, and Bird was one tweak from traction at all times by ’92.

  • McWill

    Obviously there were a lot of college stars they could of picked over Laettner at that time, and I love Shaq, but with Ewing and the Admiral playing the center position, I can imagine them having a hard time finding Shaq the minutes he would want….plus as we can see from the documentary, Laettner barely got any practice minutes lol

  • Gogs

    Laettner deserved it, first back to back champions in 20 years at collegiate level and that was Laettners team.

  • Da man

    Dominique count make it because he was from france.

  • Da man


  • http://www.sanfranciscoduilawyer.pro Sam Francisco Criminal Lawyer

    Shaq didn’t win in college, Laettner was the man but he had great teams and Coach K. Looking back, I would have loved to see Webb.

  • bwild72@gmail.com

    shaqs a baby