“We’d Easily Win” — Shaquille O’Neal Says the ’01 Lakers Would Beat Golden State

“We’d Easily Win” — Shaquille O’Neal Says the ’01 Lakers Would Beat Golden State

Shaqtin’ ain’t a fool.

The big man has spoken, albeit biased: Shaq says the 2001 Los Angeles Lakers would “easily” beat today’s Golden State Warriors.

And I tend to agree.

O’Neal makes a case for his own title-winning squad, one of the best teams in NBA Finals history, by citing their legendary 15-1 run through the postseason:



Shaq also adds that LeBron James is “up there” with Michael Jordan as the best-ever, and claims he’d personally average 45 points a night if he were playing in the current NBA.

Via USA Today:

“I think we’d easily win,” O’Neal told USA TODAY Sports by phone when asked which team was better. “Other people might feel different, they (the Warriors) might feel different. But we had one of the best teams of all-time in 2001 when we went 15-1 in the playoffs. We would’ve gone 16-0 but A.I. (Hall of famer Allen Iverson) went off on us and stepped over (former Laker) Ty Lue.”

Iverson recently said that while Lakers star LeBron James is the best of his generation, he doesn’t compare to Michael Jordan when debating the greatest of all-time. O’Neal beat Jordan’s Chicago Bulls in the 1995 playoffs with the Orlando Magic and was James’ teammate briefly with the Cleveland Cavaliers (2009-10) in the twilight of his career. He said comparing the two is difficult to do.

“We’re talking about two different eras,” O’Neal said. “Jordan averaged 30 points when people could beat you up. The game was more physical. In this era, I’d average 45 (points a game) without free throws. Jordan ruled the 90s. Me and Kobe [Bryant] did the 2000s and LeBron’s doing his thing now.

“Numbers-wise, yeah, I guess you could say he’s up there with Jordan.”

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