‘Hurt’ Shaquille O’Neal Expresses Regret Over Not Meeting Women’s Basketball Icon

Published 03/21/2022, 1:30 PM EDT

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One of the most recognizable faces in the world of sports is Shaquille O’Neal. He has had one of the greatest NBA careers and is a successful businessman and media personality off the basketball court. Apart from his gameplay, Shaq is known for his antics that make the audience lose their minds.

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While Shaq’s lighter side is known to everyone, in a recent interview he shows how kind he is. Talking about the ‘Queen of Basketball’ documentary, O’Neal got emotional talking about Lusia Harris. According to Shaq, he should’ve met her when he had the chance and he regrets his actions to date.

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Shaquille O’Neal gets emotional about Lusia Harris

One of the most influential players in the game of basketball is Lusia Harris. Interestingly enough, she scored the first-ever basket in women’s basketball history. This came during the Olympics in 1976. Moreover, she is the first woman to be officially drafted by an NBA team.

The New Orleans Jazz drafted Harris during the seventh round in 1977. However, she decided not to try out with the team owing to her pregnancy during that time. 

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Although her achievements on and off the basketball court are extraordinary, she got little or no recognition. Due to this, Shaquille O’Neal decided to fund a documentary on her life and play and he served as the executive producer of the same.

Talking about Lusia Harris in an interview, Shaq gets emotional about her. According to the 4 time NBA champion, he should have met her when he had the time. O’Neal said, ” I talked to her a few times and we facetimed and all that but when I got the news the same day you did, it kinda hurt me.

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He added, “I always put stuff off, I’m gonna do it next week, I should have jumped on the plane the first day you introduced me to this lady. As always, I’ll see you next week, I’ll see you next week and then I got the news. I would’ve loved to meet her.”

via Imago

Harris passed away on January 18, 2022, aged 66 and Shaq decided to honor her by organizing free screenings of the documentary. According to reports, O’Neal booked 5 theatres across Los Angeles that screened the ‘Queen of Basketball’ documentary honoring Lusia Harris.

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WATCH THIS STORY: Where Is Michael Jordans Birthplace? Was Boxer Mike Tyson Born In The Same Hospital as Michael Jordan?

What is your favorite memory of Shaquille O’Neal? Let us know in the comments below.

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Written by:

Abhinava Ghosh

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Abhinava is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his Bachelor's in Journalism and Mass Communication. Abhinava has been following NBA for the past 6 years and is a huge fan of the Golden State Warriors and Stephen Curry.
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Edited by:

Paras Pande

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