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Shaq Ripped The Lakers At Halftime Of Their Game Against The Mavericks: ‘It Looks Like They’re Quitting’

The Los Angeles Lakers just endured a disastrous weekend, first losing to the rival L.A. Clippers before a blowout defeat at the hands of the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday. The latter result was borderline embarrassing for the Lakers, headlined by a memorable De’Andre Jordan pass, and Los Angeles was 1-5 in the last six games before taking on the Dallas Mavericks in a nationally televised clash on Tuesday. Making things worse, the Lakers allowed 71 points in the first half against the Mavericks, falling behind by 15 points, and that opened the door for some interesting comments by Shaquille O’Neal on TNT’s halftime programming.

“When you’re a Laker, and you’re a big name player, and you’re playing in L.A., all opponents, I don’t care who they are, they’re going to be coming into L.A. and they’re going to be playing above their heads,” said Shaq. “And you can never make an excuse for lack of effort.”

Later, Shaq used the word he said didn’t want to use.

“You’ve gotta at least put more effort into it,” he said. “I don’t mind losing, but when you don’t have a lot of effort, it shows that, I hate to use this word, it looks like they’re quitting.”

There were enough hedges in here for Shaq to have plausible deniability in the event that the Lakers awaken, but his frustration was also palpable. As a former Laker and a champion while wearing that jersey, Shaq does bring a special credibility to the discussion and, after another maddening half of basketball, he at least thought aloud that his former squad could be letting go of the proverbial rope.