Shaquille O'Neal tweets that he's retiring
Seven-foot-1-inch Shaquille O'Neal won four NBA titles in a 19-year career.
June 1st, 2011
04:30 PM ET

Shaquille O'Neal tweets that he's retiring

NBA star Shaquille O'Neal appears ready to hang up his size 23 basketball shoes after a 19-year pro run that saw him collect four championships and reach fifth on the league's all-time scoring list.

"I'm retiring" and "Shaq ooout" was posted Wednesday to his Twitter account, which also links to a video in which he talks of his intentions.

“We did it. Nineteen years, baby. (I) want to thank you very much. That’s why I’m telling you first, I’m about to retire. Love you. Talk to you soon,” Shaq said in the video on Tout.com, linked from his Twitter account.

His team, the Boston Celtics, has not announced his retirement, but it did re-tweet one of O'Neal's retirement posts.


Rare photos of O'Neal | Shaq answers CNN viewers' questions in January


O'Neal, a 7-foot-1-inch center, won four NBA titles and reached the league finals two other times. He is fifth on the NBA’s all-time career scoring list with 28,596 points - short of only Hall of Famers Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Karl Malone, Michael Jordan and Wilt Chamberlain - and 12th on the league’s all-time rebounding list, with 13,099.

Drafted after his junior year at Louisiana State University in 1992, O’Neal would earn NBA rookie of the year honors with the Orlando Magic, with whom he played four seasons. He reached the NBA finals for the first time in 1995, but the Magic lost to Houston.

He started collecting championship rings in Los Angeles after signing with the Lakers ahead of the 1996-97 season. He teamed with Kobe Bryant to win three straight NBA titles from 2000 to 2002, earning NBA Finals MVP awards in all three years.

O’Neal eventually went to Miami, where he would pick up his last NBA championship with the Heat in 2006.

He went on to play for Phoenix and Cleveland before signing with the Boston Celtics in August. Limited by injury, his points-per-game average with Boston was under 10 (9.2) for the first time in his career, and he missed the first round in this year’s playoffs before scoring two points in two games in the Celtics’ second-round loss to Miami.

Miami star LeBron James, whose team beat Dallas on Tuesday night in the first game of this year's finals, tweeted his respects to O'Neal - his teammate for one year in Cleveland - on Wednesday.

"What a career for Shaq Diesel!!" a post to James' Twitter account said. "The most dominating force to ever play the game. Great person to be around as well. Comedy all the time!!"

Another former teammate, Phoenix Suns guard Steve Nash, tweeted Wednesday: "Congratulations @SHAQ on your quadruple platinum hall of fame career. I know you're not riding off into the sunset...what's next?"

Riding off into the sunset would be hard to imagine. O'Neal has long pursued entertainment interests off the basketball court, appearing in "Kazaam," "Steel" and the basketball film "Blue Chips." He's set to appear in the upcoming film "Jack & Jill," starring Adam Sandler.

"It’s fun. It’s an opportunity for me to show my funny side," he told CNN International in January.

He's also reveled in tongue-in-cheek public appearances, including turns as a Boston Pops conductor and a human statue in the Boston area's Harvard Square.

As a rapper, O'Neal sold more than 1 million copies of his debut album, "Shaq Diesel." He also expressed interest in pursuing law enforcement opportunities, having worked for the Los Angeles Police Department and the Miami Beach Police Department during some offseasons.

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Filed under: Basketball • NBA
soundoff (176 Responses)
  1. Ramiro

    i know he get a very big black thing to make us bitc,,,,,,,,,,,h so happy

    June 1, 2011 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • peace ppl

      sp1ck

      June 1, 2011 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • clownshoes

      way to be about peace d1ck

      June 1, 2011 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Mark

    Well done Shaq

    June 1, 2011 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. cpc65

    So who is going to take up so much room sitting on the bench in street clothes now? Shaq, it was um... entertaining having you in Boston this past season, but good luck on the golf courses.

    June 1, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. j hamilton

    I wish Shaq the best & I Know he will continue to be a success in life.

    June 1, 2011 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. niecy

    Congratulations u r still one of da best centers

    June 1, 2011 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  6. chesty5

    Watching Shaq run both ends of the basketball court, was real poetry in motion. Fat or not, he was conditioned to go the full 48 minutes. We dont pay good money to watch Jesus Christ dribble the ball , but we do pay to see a big man locamote, barrel into people, making slam dunks,but missing no pressure free throws! Wake up folks, we are entertained

    June 1, 2011 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Robert Downey Jr.

    who cares. Basketball sucks anyway..

    coke rules..

    June 1, 2011 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Yo

      Oh GREAT!!! Now, we are in RECESSION....

      June 1, 2011 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse |
  8. jimatmad

    I thought he had already retired.

    June 1, 2011 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  9. E.J.Wright

    Thanks 4 sharing your life with us through the game of basketball.There are not 2 many centers left out there so thanks 4 showin' and provin'

    June 1, 2011 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Mary Ann Holmes

    Shaq,
    U are the best and with tons of personality to spare. You did well and I wish you the best.

    June 1, 2011 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. kishore

    best center ever. should have retired 2-3 years back, however.

    June 1, 2011 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Name*cory j

    Good luck shaq .....

    June 1, 2011 at 8:25 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Name*cory j

    Lakers next year baby gyeah!

    June 1, 2011 at 8:27 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Yo

    Wow the whole sport is turning into DYING LEGEND. Michael Jordan is Gone and everyone is gone. Few more icons left.
    Lebron James and Kobe. They are about to retired soon and turn into prune juice.

    June 1, 2011 at 8:38 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Papa

    hahahah James nintendo nerd calls "Shaq fu" sucks!!!

    June 1, 2011 at 8:48 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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