Word On The Street (WOTS) is the Dallas Mavericks will seek a trade for Shaquille O’Neal a.k.a Shaq in the very near future. The sources of these rumors are being fueled by several things.
Second, an alleged un-named "mutual friend" of Shaq and Cuban alleges “O'Neal is making no secret of his desire privately (to play for the Mavericks) and that after the season it won't be private anymore," as reported in an April 7, 2008, story on DallasBasketball.com.
And lastly, there were Shaq's comments after the Suns were blown out 140-116 by the Mavericks in a nationally televised game on April 5, 2009. A game, by the way, that had the Suns won, would have put them within two games of the Mavericks for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Shaq proudly quipped: “There are two types of business owners. Do you want to win or do you want to save money? Period. I don't know which camp Suns owner Robert Sarver sleeps in, but Cuban spends money. I don't think he wants to save money."
He went on to say: "I've been around 17 years and that's what it is. You either want to win and don't really care about the salary cap; or you want to be under the salary cap. At the end of the season, I'm sure everybody will be prepared for whatever happens."
Oh, in case you’re wondering, Shaq scored 14 points and grabbed seven rebounds in 27 minutes of play.
Montezuma's Revenge Of The Mouth
Well, well, well. What a surprise. The Big Back-Stabber had struck again. His quote showed zero respect to and for the man who is paying him $20 million dollars in salary—this and next year—for averaging 18 points and 8.6 rebounds a game.
Or, in the single most important game of the Suns’ season, giving Mr. Sarver the aforementioned 14 points and seven rebounds.
Since The Big Disrespector joined the Suns, he has taken Mr. Sarver's franchise from a first round sweep in last season’s playoffs to not making the playoffs at all this season. If he isn’t traded this offseason, $20 million will get Mr. Sarver a severe bout of pouting followed by a series of injuries of unknown origin and severity.
For proof, see the Big FullOfCrap’s last season and a half in Miami before being traded to Phoenix.
Being in the league for 17 years has provided The Big Back-Stabber with enough cash to afford the finest cutlery in which to invest for his stabbing sprees of team owners, management, coaches, teammates, and journalists who have dared to call him out, not kiss his butt and/or let him have his way. I would venture to say more people can tell us how Shaq’s ass tastes than Kobe's.
Shaq brings Absolutely N-O-T-H-I-N-G to the Mavericks
The Mavericks’ fan base is one of the best in the NBA. They don't need Shaq in order to sell the arena out. They have team leaders in Dirk Nowitzki, Jason Kidd, Jason Terry, and Josh Howard.
They are not a team that is “one missing piece away from a championship.” Well, at least not a “piece” with an exorbitant salary and matching ego, who doesn’t play defense and who thinks the team should revolve around him.
The last team fitting that description was the Phoenix Suns. They went out and got that so-called “missing piece” from the Miami Heat in exchange for the most athletic and best defensive player on the team. Ever since that deal was consummated, Planet Orange has been spinning off-axis and losing stability.
The current Mavericks team is sans egos and genuinely loves playing with one another. They don't mind sharing the ball and/or the spotlight. They don't mind it when Dirk shoots 25 times a game. They don't mind it when Howard shoots 15 times a game. They don't mind it when Terry shoots 20 times a game.
In those players alone, we're talking about scoring averages of 25, 19, and 18 points per game.
Jason Kidd, while being the consummate point guard who’d rather distribute than shoot the rock, is still capable of going on a scoring binge if that’s what the team needs. However, with Nowitzki, Howard, and Terry on the floor, Kidd’s scoring prowess is rarely needed, if ever.
So where does Shaq and his demand for the ball fit into that equation? He doesn't, without severely rocking the boat to a much larger extent than what he's done in Phoenix.
While he may start out talking about how he just wants to fit in—yada, yada, yada—it'll only take a two to three game losing streak before The BigAllAboutMe surfaces saying "I need to get more shots if we want to win."
Hmmm…I wonder if the rest of Suns would beg to differ with that sentiment as they sat at home and watched the Mavericks advance to the second round of the playoffs.
It’s a known fact that Shaq doesn't play well or get along with others if he's not getting his way. Because there are no dominate personalities on the current Mavericks roster, he would undoubtedly takeover the locker room. While demanding the ball on the offensive end, he’d be a huge liability on the defensive end just as he’s been with the Suns.
Shaq’s only desire is to score points and stay relevant in the ever changing NBA landscape. He could care less about rebounding, as evidenced by his paltry 8.6 boards a game.
For a guy who constantly strokes his own ego by proclaiming himself to be the "most dominant ever (MDE)," you’d think the least he would do is average double figures in rebounds. His 8.4 boards a game places him 28th in league. That is three spots behinds a certain small forward for which he was traded.
Additionally, his presence in the Suns’ lineup hasn’t improved the Suns at all, despite the presence of perennial All-Stars Steve Nash and Amare Stoudemire. In fact, they have got significantly worse since his arrival.
Mark Cuban Is A Savvy Businessman
Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is, shall I say, unconventional in his approach. I like that style as I too am almost the exact same way. Nevertheless, as far as Cuban goes, unconventional doesn't equate to dummy or irrational.
After all, Cuban didn't become a billionaire by osmosis or by winning a lottery. The guy is a very shrewd businessman. Dan Snyder (owner of the Washington Redskins) does not make a Mark Cuban.
One of Cuban's greatest attributes, and a very important reason for his financial success, is his loyalty to his employees. Bringing in Shaq will test the very fabric of his loyalty to the Big three plus Kidd, not to mention the loyalty of the fans who have been there through thick and thin from day one.
Shaq and Cuban may be friends off of the court, but business is business, and Cuban doesn’t fool around in this area. He has the ability to keep them separate and I think he will do so in this matter.
If not, he risks tearing his team, and inevitably the fan base, apart by bringing an "I" guy into a locker room of "we" guys.