Shaquille O’Neal reveals that he weighed dozens of pounds more than his listed weight, especially with the Los Angeles Lakers.
Retaining Shaquille O’Neal from the OG crew alongside Candace Parker and Dwyane Wade has done wonders for TNT’s broadcast. Shaq usually plays his goofy uncle role while D-Wade and Candace break the game down.
But it also makes for many intriguing interview scenarios when Shaq’s on set. Many of these endearing interview snippets come when the Big Aristotle decides to pull something out of his memory bank.
One such exchange happened today as the crew began discussing Shaq’s playing weight from his championship days. O’Neal was popularly known as Diesel at the time because of his incredibly muscular, yet agile 7’2″ frame.
“I don’t wanna get skinny, I wanna get Diesel”: Shaquille O’Neal on his playing weight
Adam Lefkoe began the conversation about Shaq’s playing weight by first remarking how the Big Aristotle looks ‘skinny’ of late. Our beloved big man certainly wasn’t having that, but he also was willing to talk about the measures he took to change his weight over the years.
“I don’t wanna get skinny, I wanna get Diesel. I’m lifting heavy weights. Cuz I’m not doing cardio and eating salad, I don’t wanna eat salad. So I wanna get like real muscular.”
“First championship? 345. Second championship? 365. Last championship? 395. I was big that last championship. Getting down to Miami, Pat wasn’t having that. So I went down to 315 because my body fat had to be 12%.”
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) May 12, 2021
So there you have it. We got confirmation on live TV that Shaq was basically as heavy as 2 baby elephants when he was throwing down dunks on those despairing New Jersey Nets in the 2002 NBA Finals.