Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Walton slams Shaq, Shaq slams Walton

In the following video, we hear Bill Walton criticizing Shaq. We then hear Shaq's response. Walton says that Shaq has claimed injury all season long with the Heat, that when he did play he was about to break the NBA record for most consecutive games fouling out, and then says that Shaq making proclamations that he will carry the Suns to the title as ridiculous. Shaq then says that Walton shouldn't be able to talk about him, since Walton wasn't as good a player as Shaq was, and that Walton is a hypocrite because he was often injured.

Here's the thing. Walton is 100% correct. I am no lover of Walton, he is a terrible announcer prone to hyperbole and loose dentures. However, I have seen Shaq every game since he joined the Heat and he is a man in serious decline, especially this year. If Shaq plays like he did on the Heat and thinks he is putting the Suns over the top, he is crazy. If Shaq plays like a beast and DOES put the Suns on his back, then he has been goldbricking it here for the last season and a half (only about $30 million in salary).

Also, Shaq slamming Walton's credentials is very obnoxious. Surely, Shaq has had a better career than Walton, but Shaq is arguably one of the top 10 or 20 players of all time. Walton is also one of the all time greats, a Hall of Famer in his own right, one of the top collegiate players of all time as well, before his injuries kicked in. This isn't Tim Legler or John Salley being critical of Shaq.

Shaq has always been about himself, but his genial demeanor and all around good naturedness masks it. His subtle digs at Wade, Riley, and the Heat's medical team didn't sit well with me, and this just adds to it.

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