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“When It Went Bad It Was Always His Fault”: Shaquille O’Neal’s Mom Lucille On The Emotions Of Her Son Winning His First Title

Abhishek Dhariwal

"When It Went Bad It Was Always His Fault": Shaquille O'Neal's Mom Lucille On The Emotions Of Her Son Winning His First Title

Winning their first NBA championship in the league has always been a special moment for a player. The hard work, the late nights, and all the sacrifices to attain their goal finally pay off. As players tend to go through an array of emotions, Shaquille O’Neal’s mother Lucille O’Neal shares how it felt to see her son win it all from a mother’s perspective.

In a recent interview, Lucille O’Neal and Stephen Curry’s mother Sonya Curry appeared on Sway’s Universe at Shade 45. While talking, Lucille revealed to Sway how it felt when Shaq had won his first NBA championship.

“We don’t have words for it. It took so long to come. And we watched the disappointments along the way. When I saw Shaquille crying, I was crying too. Because I know the journey, and how much it took for him to get there. And I felt it deep down in here.”

“I felt so proud of him as well as happy for him because when it went bad, it was always his fault. And we had to get through that…”


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Every year, 30 teams compete for the title to be the best in the league. 450 players going at one another for 82 regular season games, followed by a grueling playoff schedule. And it truly shatters a player’s spirit to make it to the Finals and stumble at the last hurdle.

After being drafted to a young Orlando Magic side, Shaq got to work quickly. He led the side to a slew of playoff appearances, with one Finals appearance, but fell short in the end.

But to lose after coming so far caused Shaq to break down in tears, causing Lucille to shed a tear after seeing her son in such a state. However, things took a turn for the better when he won his first ring and followed it with two more championships in consecutive years.

Lucille said how it was always made out to be Shaq’s fault every time the team lost. She pointed out that it was a team game and Shaq cannot possibly be the only one to take the blame. The Los Angeles Lakers legend’s mother even revealed how she, as a mother, got to be a part of the celebrations and live his dream for a few moments.

How Lucille kept Shaquille O’Neal motivated

Lucille O’Neal has always been the biggest supporter of her son, Shaquille O’Neal. Whether it be during his success or when her son was fighting through failures and adversity, Lucille always taught her son to keep his head up.

In Shaq’s autobiography, Lucille used Michael Jordan’s early years in the league as an example to keep her son motivated.

“Michael didn’t do it the first time. Michael didn’t do it the second time. Stay with the mission.”Shaq Uncut.

Jordan did not win his first NBA championship until much later in his career. So, every time she saw her son about to give in, Lucille would use Michael as a means to keep her son in the fight for his dreams.

“Turn your ear off to the naysayers. Don’t let them crush you with their words. You have to change your way of thinking. You were the happiest, most positive little boy I’ve ever seen. Now draw from that positive thinking as a grown man.”

Lucille O’Neal’s approach to parenting was a combination of showering her son with love and affection while also giving him some tough love every now and then. And by the looks of it, she did one hell of a job raising her son who went on to become an icon in the world of basketball.

Post Edited By:Sameen Nawathe

About the author

Abhishek Dhariwal

Abhishek Dhariwal


A fan of the sport since the late 2000s, Abhishek has been covering the game of basketball for the past five years now. Having done his masters in Journalism and Mass Communication, Abhishek prides himself in being referred to as a sports journalist at The SportsRush. A fan of the San Antonio Spurs since the Tim Duncan era, Abhishek has an extensive knowledge of the sport and has covered more than 1500 articles. Having a firsthand experience of the sport, Abhishek has represented his city and state at a district and national level. And it is the same level of expertise he aims to bring while covering extensive topics both on and off the court of your favorite basketball stars.

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