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For the longest time, Shaq was my least favourite NBA player. It was his sheer brick-****houseness, the ugliness of his game, his smugness. I even wanted Jordan's Bulls to beat Orlando in the year of Jordan's first comeback, and I NEVER thought I'd hate a player more than Jordan.

But lately, I dunno. I'm warming to the Big Lug. Of course, that could have something to do with him hating Kobe Bryant (who long since passed Shaq as Most Hated) with a passion. Maybe it was Chuck D saying Shaq was the smartest NBA-er. This Wheaties Box comment is pretty funny. I mean, not BARKLEY funny, but come on.
 

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I think it was impossible for Blazers fans NOT to hate him after what his teams did to us. On the court and off, his strengths were annoyances and his weaknesses were aggravations.

As we get some distance from him (geographically and in the standings) I think that it's easier to appreciate who he is as a player and as a man. I'm not sure I'm all the way there yet, but the freeze is starting to thaw a bit.

Ed O.
 

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As soon as he got on the airplane out of LA, I started to respect him more. After hearing how much he lacks respect for Kobe, I have liked Shaq more and more. Lets hope the Corvette wrecks tonight! woo!
 

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I really do think LA brings out the worst in people. Magic Johnson's wife said he probably would not have done the things he did in any other city. Phil Jackson was arrogant, yes, in Chicago and did everything to get an edge, but you did not hear the personal insults directed against other teams' players, coaches, cities and fans. Shaquille O'Neal was likeable in Orlando, he seemed to really be having fun. He won in LA but I did not see any joy.
I see it in other sports as well. Guys (sometimes gals) who were enjoyable elsewhere go to LA and start acting like, er, excrement (can I say that word here?).
 

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P.S. the article does not mention that Clyde Drexler was on a Wheaties box. I still have it. I gave away the cereal, since I don't like Wheaties, on condition that I get the box back!
 
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