Shaquille O’Neal denies laughing at Anthony Davis for Game 5 injury, seems to throw small jab at Lakers center

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read

Hall of Famer and former Los Angeles Lakers center Shaquille O’Neal denied laughing at Lakers big man Anthony Davis after he was injured in Game 5 against the Golden State Warriors.

Davis took a shot to the head in the Lakers’ Game 5 loss, and he was taken off the floor because of the injury. He should be good to go for Game 6, but Lakers fans had some anxious moments following the injury.

In a postgame show on TNT, O’Neal and Charles Barkley seemingly couldn’t hold in their laughter when it came to Davis.

O’Neal clarified that he was not laughing at Davis, but he seemed to issue a challenge to the Lakers big man in the process.

“I ain’t making fun of nobody, that’s not what I do,” O’Neal said, according to Jason Jones of The Athletic. “But I do know you’re not going to stop me from playing in that Game 6.”

The 51-year-old won four NBA titles in his NBA career, including three with the Lakers. He is undoubtedly one of the most dominant players of all time, and he played through injuries to help his teams win. O’Neal explained that when addressing the situation with Davis.

“You see why I walk funny?” O’Neal said. “Because I sucked it up. You see why my toes don’t bend? Because I sucked it up.”

The Lakers, who have a 3-2 series lead on the Warriors, are certainly hoping the head injury Davis suffered won’t limit him in Game 6. Los Angeles has yet to lose at home in the postseason, going 6-0 (including the play-in tournament) at Arena.

Davis has been a beast for the Lakers in the playoffs, dominating on both ends of the floor. The eight-time All-Star is averaging 21.5 points, 13.5 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 3.4 blocks and 1.4 steals per game in the playoffs.

He leads the NBA in rebounds per game and blocks per game in the playoffs, showing just how valuable he is to the Lakers.

It’s good to see O’Neal clear the air about Davis, as it is never good to enjoy or laugh at a player’s misfortune when it comes to injuries.

Lakers fans are hoping Davis can stay healthy to give the team a shot at winning yet another NBA title in the 2022-23 season.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.