LA Lakers PA announcer shares memories of Celtics rivalry and Shaquille O'Neal's dominance: "I saw Kevin McHale assault Kurt Rambis"

Kevin McHale, Kurt Rambis, Shaquille O
Kevin McHale, Kurt Rambis, Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant (Photo: Basketball Network and SB Nation)

Longtime LA Lakers public address announcer Lawrence Tanter shared his memories of watching the rivalry against the Boston Celtics to the dominance of Shaquille O'Neal. Tanter has been the Lakers' PA announcer since the start of the 1981-82 NBA season.

In an interview with Taylor Geas of, Tanter opened up about his job as the Lakers' PA announcer. He remembered all the great players, games, rivalries and memories over the last 40 years on the job.

"I've seen Doug Christie uppercut Rick Fox," Tanter said. "I saw Kevin McHale assault Kurt Rambis. I've seen overtime games. I've seen Kobe Bryant put on some of the most dazzling performances in NBA history. I've seen the muscle, the intensity of Shaquille O'Neal."

He continued:

"I've seen the grace of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. I've seen the intuition and creativity of a 6'9" point guard from Lansing, Michigan named Earvin Magic Johnson, up close and personal. ... To see it up close, and to hear it, and to feel the talcum powder of LeBron James sprinkling on my face before a game. ... It's pretty humbling."

Tanter has witnessed the LA Lakers win ten NBA championships. He started at the height of the "Showtime" Lakers with Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and James Worthy.

The 1990s was a downtime for the Lakers till the arrival of Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant. The dominant duo helped usher in a new generation of great Lakers teams, winning three straight championships from 2000 to 2002.

When O'Neal was traded to the Miami Heat in 2004, it took a while before Bryant returned atop the NBA mountain. "Black Mamba" helped the Lakers win banners 15 and 16 in 2009 and 2010.

After another dark period in Lakers history following Bryant's retirement in 2016, LeBron James arrived two years later. He brought the franchise their 17th NBA championship in 2020.

Also Read: "He's probably a little bit more explosive than I was" - Shaquille O'Neal praises Zion Williamson's breakout season

How dominant was Shaquille O'Neal with LA Lakers?

Shaquille O'Neal with the LA Lakers
Shaquille O'Neal with the LA Lakers

Shaquille O'Neal played most his NBA career with the LA Lakers. He joined the Lakers as a free agent in 1996 after four years with the Orlando Magic. O'Neal was named the MVP in 2000 and winning three championships from 2000 to 2002.

The Hall of Fame big man was also the NBA Finals MVP in the three championship runs. He was an unstoppable force in the paint, averaging 27.0 points, 11.8 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 2.5 blocks with the Lakers. He also shot 57.5% from the field but was only a 53.3% shooter from the free-throw line.


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