For Shaquille O’Neal, the LA Lakers’ elimination from the playoffs team selection has come as a hard pill to swallow with the star-studded team the Lakers fielded this season. The Lakers’ 2021-22 NBA season is as good as over with nothing tangible to show for it.
On his podcast, “The Big Podcast with Shaq,” O’Neal shared his thoughts about the Lakers’ 11th seed finish in the NBA Western Conference. He called the franchise out for having four players from the NBA all-time 75 greatest players’ list in the league. He stated that it was inexcusable for a team with such a caliber of players to miss out on the playoffs.
“You can’t have four top 75 guys on the same team and not make the playoffs,” O’Neal said. “Period, period. I don’t care who playing.”
Having spent a fortune in the postseason to procure the services of top players like Russell Westbrook and Carmelo Anthony. No one envisaged that the big-market team would miss out on the playoffs spot.
At the beginning of the season, their floor was pegged at a first-round exit. Unfortunately, they did not meet the requirements, and lost their chance for a play-in tournament to the New Orleans Pelicans and the San Antonio Spurs.
Shaquille O’Neal expresses his disappointment in the LA Lakers after being eliminated
Having suffered an eight-game losing streak, the LA Lakers’ fans present at the Crypto.com Arena cheered on as the franchise broke the losing streak. They defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder by double digits, winning with a 19-point differential. A win that tasted like a loss since the playoffs elimination has left a sour taste in the mouths of fans, especially Shaquille O’Neal.
O’Neal has taken to various platforms to share his thoughts about the failure of the Lakers to make the playoffs. A few days ago in an interview with CBS Sports HQ, he had suggested that the front office lose everyone on the team, leaving only LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
“You gotta get rid of expiring contracts,“ Shaq stated. “You gotta get rid of the projects that didn’t work. And you gotta try to get younger and more athletic around LeBron.”
Their final game of the regular season comes on Sunday against the Nikola Jokic-led Denver Nuggets. Jokic, who doubles as the league leader in total rebounds and is the favorite to win the Most Valuable Player of the year, will take on the court against the Lakers. The Nuggets have won both encounters this season and will be looking to make it a clean sweep.