Shaq: Cavaliers Allowed LeBron To Do Whatever He Wanted
Shaquille O'Neal spent one season with LeBron James playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers and talks about their time as teammates in his forthcoming autobiography.
“LeBron was a huge star,” O’Neal wrote in the autobiography. “He was as big as I was in 2000 in L.A. when I was dominating the league.
“Our coach, Mike Brown, was a nice guy, but he had to live on edge because nobody was supposed to be confrontational with LeBron. Nobody wanted him to leave Cleveland, so he was allowed to do whatever he wanted to do.
“I remember one day in a film session LeBron didn’t get back on defense after a missed shot. Mike Brown didn’t say anything about it. He went to the next clip and it was Mo Williams not getting back and Mike was saying, ‘Yo, Mo, we can’t have that. You’ve got to hustle a little more.’ So Delonte West is sitting there and he’s seen enough and he stands up and says, ‘Hold up, now. You can’t be pussyfooting around like that. Everyone has to be accountable for what they do, not just some us.’ Mike Brown said, ‘I know, Delonte. I know.’ Mike knew Delonte was right.
“I’m not sure if Kobe [Bryant] is going to listen to Mike Brown [now Lakers coach]. LeBron never really did.”