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.
I am glad to see people speaking their minds. I just want to say that I dont have much respect for a person with such talent and displays low morals. He is going to retire and be let out into society – there goes the neighborhood! Dont know what it is about sports and men, but it seems like balls (pun intended) in the hand makes for no brains and morals.
Are you somehow getting Shaq and Kobe confused or something?
Shaq was named an honorary US marshal, worked with law enforcement. He has never done anything to warrant your derision.
Do you have a race issue? Pay attention and read up on someone before you slander them
Are you confused?Shaq's morals are as good as yours if not much better.he does community work, charity events(for free!) and dedicates his time to several youth programs.not to mention money he doles out to needy charitable organizations.do you know how much money he donated to New Orleans after Katrina and haiti too?i didn't think so.
I have better things to think about than this j-hole's "career". He's a double d-bag.
what are you talking about? Get your facts straight before you accuse him. He's a pretty good guy and an excellent ball player (though he didn't really help my team out this year). I enjoyed watching him play even when he was on the Lakers.
Shaq u da best have a gr8t lyfe pce...
Shaq does more in communities than leaders themselves. From being a positive role model to his investments with local police departments, he is undoubtedly one of a dying breed. Thanks for the memories Shaq.
Maybe now, you will be able to devote your time to golf and beat Sir Charles (Barkley) at something other than ball.
God bless your future endeavours
One of the greatest centers to ever play the game EVER, wish he could've at least spent bench time w/ my Sixers, oh well, Shaq is a HOFer, much love to the Diesel
Congrats on a Great Career Shaq! You have all these haters who know nothing in regards to basketball talent...and it seems as though their hate is racially based than your accomplishments. You are among the greatest with MJ, Dr J, and Magic. What made you great is not how many points scored or rebounds grabbed...but when you have someone outside of the black race imitate you!!! That's Shaq Diesel Power!!!
I remember back when Shaq first came into the league he had a commercial with Wilt, Jabbar, and I think Russell. It was a past-legends/future legend thing and I though "Oh boy, there's a jinx." Glad it worked out for him after all. I like O'Neal and it may have cost them some rings, but I wish the Lakers had kept him and traded Kobe.
Wow congrats...I'm kinda sad now.
Shaq is still playing?
ummm.no.that is what the article is about.sillyhead.
Shaq will be truly missed. Only laker I ever liked. Lakers should have kept him and got rid of kobe.
People always try to tear others down,why knock others exsploits that we know about why not share yours with the world so you can be knocked. No I dont think you will cause you are afraid of others will say. So with that being said congrats shaq
He has played like he retired 5 years ago. Might as well make it official.
Ya, Stats back it up. S(hack)Q has played like he retired 5 years ago. Might as well make it official.
Point per game average fell WELL below all time.
2006-07 MIA 17.3
2007-08 MIA 14.2
2007-08 PHX 12.9
2007-08 - 61 13.6
2008-09 PHX 17.8
2009-10 CLE 12.0
2010-11 BOS 9.2
Career - 23.7
I hope he is not one of those many athletes who would go broke in a few years.
ABCFellow is a dope!
Also, Shaq has been hurt all season long I don't think its gonna be much of a loss for the mighty celtics. I have been scratching my head wondering how a guy that is always hurt is promoting icy hot. "When the heat is on, the pain is gone"..... What the. Get out there and play then :-/
About time shaq! consentrait on your comedy intrest please. :)
Concentrate on your spelling please.
Damn its about that time you work on your spelling because you messed that word up. Heres a tip before you blog write it down and ask somebody if it looks right. You should feel real stupid about that. Trying to tell somebody about themselves and you can't even spell what you want to tell them lol idiot.
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