Shaquille O’Neal thinks his Los Angeles Lakers teams could beat the Golden State Warriors.
The Hall of Fame center won three titles with Los Angeles from 1996-04.
He compared those squads to two-time defending champions the Warriors in an interview with USA Today on Wednesday.
“I think we’d easily win,” O’Neal said. “Other people might feel different, they [the Warriors] might feel different. But we had one of the best teams of all time in 2001 when we went 15-1 in the playoffs. We would’ve gone 16-0 but A.I. [Hall of Famer Allen Iverson] went off on us.”
That 2000-01 Lakers team registered a 56-26 record. They swept through the first three rounds of the playoffs before topping Iverson’s 76ers in five games.
Los Angeles captured three straight championships from 1999-02. They registered a combined 181-65 regular-season record during that time frame.
The Warriors have taken home three of the last four titles and lead the Western Conference with a 19-9 record.
O’Neal finished his 19-year career averaging 23.7 points and 10.9 rebounds. He made 15 All-Star teams and won a fourth championship with the Heat in 2005-06.