Shaquille O’Neal thinks Thunder has been ‘playing hero ball and taking crazy shots’ too much
For NBA legend and four-time champion Shaquille O’Neal, the Oklahoma City Thunder is not playing as one unit and this is the sole reason for the playoff woes.
Per NBA on TNT, O’Neal proved his claims by looking at how Boston Celtics head coach Brad Stevens controlled Game 4 against the Indiana Pacers. While the Celtics played great team ball, the Thunder settled for “hero ball” and settled for bad shots.
“They are playing hero ball and taking crazy shots.”
"They are playing hero ball and taking crazy shots."
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) April 22, 2019
O’Neal’s comments come in after the Thunder suffered a 111-98 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers. The series is now 3-1 and they are just a game away from elimination. Paul George had 32 points on 8-of-21 shooting from the field and 4-of-10 from downtown. Russell Westbrook, meanwhile, had 14 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists. However, he was a horrendous 5-of-21 from the field and 2-of-7 from downtown.
It was a close game up until the third quarter where the Blazers stretched the lead to as much as 19 points thanks to an explosion from Damian Lillard. He finished with 24 points while backcourt partner C.J. McCollum chipped in 27 markers.
The series will shift back to Portland for Game 5 on Tuesday. The Blazers have a chance to move on to the Conference Semifinals for the first time since the 2016 playoffs. The Thunder, meanwhile, has a chance to extend the series and keep their hopes alive.