Veteran free agent center Shaquille O'Neal – the future Hall of Famer without a team — has been lobbying the Boston Celtics aggressively, still trying to convince them that his addition would help their quest to win another NBA championship.He still wants to be The Big Leprechaun.
Although O'Neal was unavailable for comment Friday, two sources close to him confirmed his continued interest in the Celtics even though they currently have no room, or exceptions, under the salary cap to pay him beyond the NBA veteran's minimum of $1.35 million.
"He only wants to go to a team with a chance to win it all,'' one
source said. "That's a short list. Even for the money, he's not going
to a non-contender.''
With Marc Stein reporting earlier in the week that the Hawks are the only team with an active interest in Shaq, it's not too surprising to see him lobbying to go somewhere with a chance at a title. And with Kendrick's injury, the Celtics are a logical fit.
With Perk out we're taking a huge hit defensively. No way to avoid that. But offensively, Shaq would give us a little punch. We'd finally have someone to dump the ball to on the blocks when the offense breaks down, and while the team seems to be at its peak when they're able to get out and run, Doc isn't exactly running a Showtime offense. So O'Neal wouldn't be a huge hindrance there.
At the very least he'd give us size, rebounding and scoring potential off the bench. All things severely lacking last season, especially against the Lakers.
Plus, if he does join the Celtics, if you squint real hard, you may be able to convince yourself that it's 2001 and Danny Ainge was able to assemble a super squad, only rivaled by the Monstars from Space Jam.