The Phoenix Suns and the Golden State Warriors are top of the Western Conference, and Shaquille O'Neal has them as clear front runners. The TNT analyst and NBA Hall of Famer spoke on his podcast The Big Shaqstradmus recently, picking the Warriors as NBA champions.
O’Neal joined TNT 11-years ago and has been one of the critical members of the Emmy award-winning show Inside the NBA show. Following his historic playing career, O'Neal has gone on to have one of the more interesting post-NBA careers. O'Neal has been involved in various business ventures along with TV and media appearances.
In the most recent episode of his podcast, O’Neal went on to make quite the statement regarding the Warriors potentially winning the 2021-2021 NBA Championship, suggesting that the Suns don't stand a chance.
“If the Suns beat Golden State I am going to walk two blocks with Suns written on my ass, I’ll post it live on Instagram with it”
The playoffs are entirely different, and the Warriors have a great team, but so do the Suns. O’Neal is putting up a big bet on what would most likely be a decent, evenly matched series between two of the elite teams in the NBA.
Is Shaquille O’Neal right about the Golden State Warriors
The Golden State Warriors are squarely in playoff contention this season. Despite being 1.5 half games behind Phoenix, the Warriors have a 2-1 lead in the three games played so far between the two teams this season. The Warriors do have the regular-season advantage as of now, with a favorable run of games coming up, and won't play for the Suns until March 30th.
The Warriors have one of the best rosters in the NBA, and with Klay Thompson finding his feet again, it only makes the team better. Jordan Poole can now move into a primary support role and act as spark-plug scorer off the bench with Thompson back.
Not to mention potential MVP candidate Stephen Curry along with Andrew Wiggins who is making a solid All-Star claim this season. While Draymond Green's play could see him win defensive player of the year.
The Suns still have a stacked roster with Chris Paul having another MVP-type season and Devin Booker, who could make his claim. Deandre Ayton keeps showing that it might have been a mistake for the Suns not to give him the money in the off-season, and Mikal Bridges is proving worth the contract he got.
The Suns are the reigning Western Conference champions and are currently the No.1 seed with a 1.5 game lead over the Warriors, who sit in second place.
A playoff series between the Suns and Warriors might be precisely what the NBA would want. If it were to happen one could imagine that it would be a well-fought-out series between two of the best teams in the NBA.
O’Neal could be right or wrong, if he is wrong then him fulfilling the terms of his bet would be funny to see. However, as NBA fans, all we can d is hope for a competitive and entertaining series should the Warriors and Suns meet. Which wouldn't be a stretch considering the three already compelling matchups they've had this season.