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“Well, I made it through the entire show. But the truth is, if it wasn’t for Shaq, I wouldn’t have made it. Boring matches, boring set-ups. And I hate to say this, but it seems like wrestling has gone downhill. Perhaps it’s me that changed, but I wrestling now seems weakened, watered down. When a former reality show star is in one of your biggest matches, that can’t be a good sign. I gave the WWE a shot tonight, but it did not pull me back in.
That Shaq guy, however, he seems like he might be worth keeping an eye on.” [Lang Whitaker/SLAMOnline]
Could this all get tiring? “Welcome to Shaqenfreude, where we attempt to deal with our new superstar’s penchant for extracurricular activities. [...] I have no possible clue how to make sense of any of this. Once we get onto the second extended bit involving a midget, I’m generally out of realiable analysis. This is one of our stars, and he’s going to play a big part in the championship run. This is part of the deal. Just try and embrace the crazy. [John Krolik/Cavs: The Blog]
Kobe? Check. Wiz? Check. “New Cavaliers center Shaquille O’Neal was big hit in the first 15 minutes as guest general manager of the World Wrestling Entertainment’s “Monday Night Raw” in Washington, D.C. WWE commentator Jerry “The King” Lawler, a Amherst, Ohio native, predicted as the show opened the that 15-time NBA all-star will “slam dunk somebody tonight” and he did in his opening ring talk. On his way to the ring, the personable Shaq — known for his humor — came out, shook hands with the fans but tore up a Kobe Bryant poster. The only boos he drew was when he said “Hey D.C., LeBron James told me to tell you hello.” [Pat Galbincea /The Plain Dealer]
Could this “rivalry” be any more one-sided? “While I was there, I asked Shaq what he knows about the simmering Wiz-Cavs rivalry. He threw several gallons of cold iced-tea on that talk. “I don’t know anything about it,” he said. Wizards fans hate the Cavs more than just about any team, I said.
“Ok,” Shaq replied. “I guess when you become part of a certain organization, you inherit certain things, but I’ve been in the league 17, 18 years, and I can withstand anything.” [Dan Steinberg/DC Sports Bog]
Looking forward to 2009-10: “It’s still hard to believe that two of the biggest stars on the planet now call Cleveland home. Shaquille O’Neal and LeBron James aren’t just great basketball players, they are “global icons.” Never before has Cleveland been the center of this kind of worldwide attention. While the most important thing is the quest for an NBA Championship, the ride to the ring should be pretty fun.” [Michael Curry/Cavs HQ]