One NBA star will have to do better in order to impress the IcyHot guy.
During the latest episode of his “The Big Podcast with Shaq,” retired center great Shaquille O’Neal pushed back on co-host Nischelle Turner’s praise of Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell. The newly-acquired Mitchell has been lights-out for the Cavs through seven games, leading them to a surprising 6-1 record.
“This is regular season,” said O’Neal. “Don’t get too excited … Calm down. Regular season. We still got All-Star Game, we still got playoffs. Anybody can shoot the ball every time and score a lot of points. But you gonna win? You gonna lead your team to the promised land? That’s what I care about.
“I don’t promote guys that have good seasons,” O’Neal added. “I promote guys that have great seasons … There’s guys in the park that can shoot 50 times and get 28 points. I’m not impressed by that.”
The three-time All-Star Mitchell has been one of the brightest spots in the NBA so far this season. His averages of 31.1 points, 7.1 assists, and 1.6 steals per game on 48.1 percent from the field and a smoldering 43.8 percent from deep are all career-high marks. The Cavs as a whole also look terrifying right now as a top-eight team in both offensive and defensive efficiency thus far.
But O’Neal is right that Mitchell needs more than a seven-game regular season run to reverse the narrative surrounding him. Mitchell has never gotten past the second round of the playoffs in his NBA career and always seems to have another level of superstardom that he has yet to truly unlock.
Of course, Mitchell is something of a favorite punching bag for O’Neal. In the past, O’Neal was accused of “hating” on Mitchell by another NBA player.
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