O'Neal Calls Rodman An Idiot


As the NBA lockout nears its fifth month, it's not just the shooting, passing, and rebounding of playing basketball the players miss.

Some miss talking trash too.

Los Angeles Lakers center Shaquille O'Neal told SportsLine Radio Chicago Bulls forward Dennis Rodman is "a bum" and threatened to knock him out.

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The reason: On The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Rodman hinted O'Neal was overpaid and one of the problems in the league. O'Neal shot back during an exclusive interview with Scott Kaplan and Sid Rosenberg on The Drive on Tuesday.

"My mother never told me to talk about female dogs. (That) is what I want to say but I can't say the word," O'Neal said. "You put it on the air. I'll knock Rodman's [expletive] out."

"The guy's going to get on TV and talk, but every time I guard him alone, you should see him and how he acts. 'Hey how you doing Shaq, how you doing?' Let it be known on this radio station, I will knock his [expletive] clean out. Take the fine."

O'Neal went on to disparage Rodman, a two-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year who has been a member of two NBA championship teams with the Detroit Pistons and the last three Bulls championship teams.

"First of all, if my grandmother played with Michael Jordan, she'd have a ring too," O'Neal said.

"Let's get down to the facts now. He played with Isiah (Thomas), one of the great players in the world. He got a ring. He played with Mike. He got a ring. When he was by himself, what happened? When he was with what happened? They got sent home early. Last year, he was just hiding behind Michael Jordan and (Scottie) Pippen. They did all the work. All he did was rebound. In other words, he's a bum."

O'Neal, on the show to promote his new rap album RESPECT, has yet to win an NBA title. His best opportunity came in 1995 when the Orlando Magic reached the NBA Finals before being swept by the Houston Rockets in four games.

"Once I get me a couple of players that work hard, once I get me a one-two punch, I'll be O.K. I don't have to hide behind nobody," O'Neal said. (Rodman's) hiding behind Jordan and Isiah. He's a bum, I'll tell him to his face."

When asked if he would ever want to play on the same team with Rodman, O'Neal replied, "No. He's a idiot. I don't like playing with jerky idiots."

O'Neal and Rodman are two of the league's most recognizable personalities, with each frequently appearing in movies, television shows and commercials. In addition to his rap career, O'Neal has appeared in two major motion pictures while Rodman had his own show on MTV.

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