Does NBA Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal have a statue outside the Staples Center?
Shaquille O’Neal is widely regarded as one of the best players to ever step on a basketball court. The NBA Hall of Famer enjoyed an incredible career spanning almost two decades where he represented a number of franchises and won four NBA Championships – as well as a regular season MVP and three Finals’ MVPs that cemented his legacy as one of the best centers ever.
Over a career spanning from 1992 to 2011, Shaq represented the Orlando Magic, the Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, Phoenix Suns, Cleveland Cavaliers and the Boston Celtics. However, Shaq is most associated with the Lakers because of his incredibly success with the Los Angeles franchise where he won three back-to-back titles from 2000 to 2002.
Shaq’s incredible spell of dominance where he combined size, strength and speed to become one of the most feared physical specimens in NBA history was at its best when he was in Los Angeles. While Shaq’s legacy as a legendary Laker is well-cemented, fans often ask if he has a statue outside the famous Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Does Shaq have a statue outside the Staples Center in Los Angeles?
It turns out that yes, he does have a statue outside the Staples Center.
In 2017, Shaquille O’Neal became the latest Lakers legend honored in sculpture form at the Staples Center. Shaq joined fellow NBA legends Phil Jackson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jerry West, and Kobe Bryant at an unveiling ceremony, during which the statue was revealed. Weighing in at well over 1,000 pounds, the huge sculpture depicts O’Neal dangling from the rim as a freshly dunked ball makes its way through the net. At nine feet tall, the statue is just a bit larger than the man himself.
The sculpture is the eighth statue honoring a Los Angeles sports icon to be unveiled at the Staples Center, though O’Neal is one of the few to have actually played in the building. Not only that, O’Neal broke ground for the venue in 1998 and was a huge part of its early success, helping to bring the Lakers three titles immediately after it opened.