Even though the early 2000s Los Angeles Lakers with Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant were one of the greatest teams in NBA history, the two stars didn’t always get along.
Sure, the two won three NBA championships as a duo, but many believe that if it wasn’t for the ongoing feuds between the two, they would have won more championships.
But after his active playing career, Shaquille O’Neal was able to leave what happened between the two behind him, as did Kobe, and the two were able to build a friendship.
When talking about his time with the Lakers, Shaq always tells the best stories, so when talking to The Coaches Network, the Big Diesel gave some interesting insight of his time as Kobe Bryant’s teammate, saying that while they weren’t best friends, but best friends on the court.
“I was playing with a younger version of myself. Somebody that had the same mentality. A lot of times guys worry about titles instead of worrying about certain things. We were both about whose team it is, who’s the best player on the team? …We had a job to do… [indiscernible] won three championships in a row….”
“If I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t change anything. People think, ‘oh you didn’t get along’, I know we didn’t get along but we respected each other. That’s all you need… When you have respect for each other, nothing else matters… Were we best friends? Nope. Were we best friends on the court? Yup…”