PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Shaquille O’Neal was part of a panel on Wednesday at the Reebok Classic Breakout at Philadelphia University. He also joined 94WIP’s and CSN’s Michael Barkann on Comcast SportsNet’s ‘Philly Sports Talk’ show. The four-time NBA champ and three-time NBA Finals MVP spoke about the Sixers rebuild and their new big man, Nerlens Noel, among other topics.
“They’re on the right track, but they are two big pieces away or three to four nice pieces away,” O’Neal told the panel about the Sixers rebuild process. “For us in Orlando, we had three big pieces in three years. Me first, Penny [Hardaway] the second year and then Horace Grant the third [year]. That would be similar to what Miami did when they had Dwyane Wade, having a big three. In Philly, you have [Nerlens Noel]—who’s going to do great on defense—the young guard Michael Carter-Williams, he’s playing well. Now you need one or two more role playing pieces, so you can start to build like [the Oklahoma City Thunder] did.”
As one of the NBA’s best centers ever, O’Neal provided some insight on Sixers rookie center Nerlens Noel. O’Neal lives in Orlando and says he has been able to see Noel play this summer in the Orlando Summer League, where Noel has been impressive.
“Hell of a shot blocker,” O’Neal told Barkann on ‘Philly Sports Talk’ of Noel. “Philadelphia fans will be very excited because we know Philadelphia does love hard work, they love defense. So he will fit in very nicely here in Philadelphia. I’d like to see him add a little bit more muscle and define his offensive game a little, but he’s a rookie. I think he’s going to do great. “
On a lighter note, O’Neal played quick-six on ‘Philly Sports Talk’, where he answered six rapid fire questions from Barkann. You can watch that fun video here.
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