Shaquille O’Neal Explains Why LeBron James Deserves a Statue Outside Lakers Arena

The career of LeBron James with the Los Angeles Lakers has consistently sparked debate within the NBA. While certain individuals view his tenure as triumphant due to his championship victory, there are others who perceive the balance between success and failure to be unfavorably skewed.

The potential of LeBron James receiving a statue from the Lakers after his career has prompted speculation and generated discussions among fans on social media. Those who point to Shaquille O’Neal, who has already been honored with a statue, argue that LeBron equally deserves this recognition.

Shaquille O’Neal on LeBron James deserving a statue

Shaquille O'Neal
Shaquille O’Neal

“He did win a title with the Lakers and lot of people say that it doesn’t count. LeBron has broken the record [scoring record] and he broke the record as a Laker,” Shaq said to Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson of Bally Sports.

Despite acknowledging the numerous positive contributions LeBron James has made to the Lakers, there remains a segment of fans who believe that his efforts thus far have not been substantial enough to warrant a statue for the franchise.

“But the thing about the Lakers is that Laker fans are real greedy. Okay, you got us this bubble championship, but when are you going to give us another? It’s always that,” Shaq added.

To be honest, LeBron James hasn’t had the same level of impact as some of the other revered Lakers legends. While he did secure the championship in 2020, his performance has been overshadowed by early playoff eliminations and a couple of instances where he failed to make it to the postseason altogether. It wasn’t until this year that he managed to progress beyond the initial round. While winning a championship is undoubtedly a significant achievement, particularly when it puts him on par with the Boston Celtics in terms of all-time titles, it alone may not be sufficient to warrant the erection of a statue in LeBron’s honor.

King James’ statue is a controversial topic

LeBron James
LeBron James

Over the years, there has been considerable debate surrounding this issue. Matt Barnes advocates for the Lakers to erect a statue of LeBron, but suggests that they prioritize honoring Kobe Bryant first. On the other hand, Stephen A. Smith holds the opposite view, asserting that LeBron hasn’t had the same level of impact as esteemed Lakers legends such as Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Kobe Bryant himself.

Ultimately, the decision regarding statues rests with the Lakers organization, and they will have the final say. If LeBron manages to secure another championship, it could potentially strengthen the case for him receiving a statue. However, at present, there is a limited number of supporters who believe he should be granted this honor.

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