35,000 dollars was the cost for Shaquille O’Neal’s piece of mind while talking about officials, specifically Bob Delaney, following the team’s 86-78 loss against Orlando. Here’s what Shaq had to say about number 26 in the locker room after the game, in case you missed it:
“We have two premier big men out there. He is pushing, I’m pushing. Let us play. I guess they [fans] come out to see No. 26 [Delaney] play. He was a great player out there today. They paid all that money to see No. 26 come play. My thing is, if you’re going to call it, call it the same way every time. Don’t pick and choose who you are going to call it against.”
Both teams have a case in this argument, (Howard and Shaq were in foul trouble all game) but Shaq noted that in his argument so he was making a fair point. For the record, Shaq fouled out while scoring just 2 points and grabbing one board in 13 minutes of action. It was easily his worst overall game of the season as a Celtic.
The good news for Shaq is the 35,000 dollar fine probably won’t make them much of a dent in the Diesel’s wallet. The guy has made more money than any other player over his NBA career.
UPDATE: Here’s Shaq’s reaction to the fine in Indy, according to The Boston Herald:
Having just received the word before the Celts took the practice floor at Conseco Fieldhouse this afternoon, Shaq smirked. Before he could be asked a question, he offered his take.
“Whoop-de-freakin’-do,” he said. “That’s my reaction.”
A few minutes later, Shaq added, “Here’s my quote: Over my 18-year career, I’ve probably paid $90 million in federal tax, $20 million in FICA and $1 million in David Stern tax.”
Sounds about right.