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#pounditMonday, April 22, 2024

Shaq lost big money betting on Lakers

Shaq looks on

Nov 22, 2017; Paradise Island, BAHAMAS; NBA former player Shaquille O’Neal during the first half of the game between the North Carolina State Wolfpack and Arizona Wildcats in the 2017 Battle 4 Atlantis in Imperial Arena at the Atlantis Resort. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Shaquille O’Neal probably wanted to put his size-23 foot through the television on Thursday.

The retired Hall of Famer O’Neal revealed on TNT before that night’s game between the Lakers and Boston Celtics that he bet $20,000 on the Lakers to win. The Celtics were playing their second game in as many days, and O’Neal is obviously a major loyalist to the Lakers, his former team.

O’Neal’s bet was not looking too good in the early going. The Celtics were wiping the floor with their purple-and-gold rivals through the first three quarters or so, leading by as many as 20 points. But all of a sudden, the Lakers came barnstorming back and ripped off a 24-5 run to kick off the fourth quarter and take an improbable 106-93 lead.

Unfortunately though, the Lakers faltered just as quickly as they had rallied. Within the span of less than four minutes, they allowed the Celtics to tie the game at 110, thanks in part to two massive missed free throws by Anthony Davis with 28 seconds to go. The game went into overtime, and the Celtics finally stamped out the Lakers’ flame, winning 122-118. With it, they also stamped out O’Neal’s hopes of a big payday.

Especially considering the false hope that the Lakers gave him, that had to be an extremely bitter gambling L for DJ Diesel. But while $20,000 is an objectively large sum of money, it is ultimately just a drop in the bucket for O’Neal, who has a reported net worth of $400 million. He should be able to make it all back in no time, particularly with his vast investment portfolio.

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