Shaquille O’Neal ‘not happy’ with Paul George’s under-confident response to his faith in the current Clippers team

Shaquille O'Neal wanted Paul George to proclaim his team as title contenders, which they arguably are.


Shaquille O’Neal ‘not happy’ with Paul George’s under-confident response to his faith in the current Clippers team

Paul George and Shaquille O'Neal. (Image via EuroSport, CNN)

The LA Clippers, after a difficult start to the season, have emerged as one of the most impressive teams in the NBA. Featuring a glut of superstars, the Clippers are currently 4th in the Western Conference with a 26-14 record.

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The likes of Paul George, James Harden, Kawhi Leonard, and Russell Westbrook are still 4 of the best players in the league. Their most recent victims, the OKC Thunder, have themselves had a brilliant season thus far, and are currently 2nd in the Conference. Still, while people expect the Clippers to emerge as title contenders, those sort of expectations have not been reserved for the Thunder.

Speaking after the win, Paul George was interviewed by NBA on TNT’s Shaquille O’Neal. Shaq wanted to know how far PG13 thought the Clippers can go this season. George was seemingly reluctant to proclaim his team as title favorites, and said the following:

I think we [are] in the driver's seat. We control our destiny. We can go as far as we want to go. I think we committed to one another which is the most important thing for this team.

Shaq however, thought that this was not the right mentality, and claimed both him and Candace Parker knew exactly the mentality the Clippers need:

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I would’ve like him to say ‘We’re gonna win the championship. When they asked the question ‘How far do you want to go,’ I would’ve liked him to say, ‘We’ve got all the ingredients to win a championship’. Me and Candace, we know- once you start thinking like that, once you start believing in that, you become more dangerous.

Hence, while O’Neal believes the LA Clippers have everything they need, he also thinks a change in mentality will only do the team good. The victory in itself is bound to further embolden the franchise, as it came against a team that has impressed everyone via their performances thus far.

OKC Thunder are themselves in title conversations

In what has been a remarkable season thus far, the OKC Thunder have seen Shai Gilgeous-Alexander dominate proceedings consistently. Averaging 31 points, 6.3 assists, and 5.7 rebounds, SGA has established himself as one of the biggest stars in the NBA and has found extraordinary support as well.

The OKC Thunder’s punt on Chet Holmgren has more than worked. The 21-year-old did not play a single game last campaign but has shown exactly why he was so highly rated. Considering the way the Thunder have gone thus far, Holmgren is the obvious favorite for the ROTY title despite Victor Wembanyama’s brilliance for a struggling San Antonio Spurs.

The OKC Thunder are one of the most exciting teams in the NBA this season. (Image via NBA.com)

In this way, the Clippers are the Thunder represent two different sides of the NBA. On one hand, the Clippers have 4 superstar veterans still hungry for a championship. For the OKC Thunder, the overall campaign represents another stepping stone in the journey of their talented youngsters.

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While nobody will be expecting a title charge, the Thunder have more than enough in their ranks to pose a challenge to the best sides in the league. They will only get better in the coming time, and will not be too concerned about losing against a team that boasts of multiple generational superstars.

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