As the current edition of the Los Angeles Lakers are locked in a tooth-and-nail fight for a playoff spot, a few of the most iconic personalities in franchise history joined HuffPost Live to reflect on the some of the Purple and Gold glory days and discuss a variety of topics ranging from Phil Jackson's Twitter debut to gay athletes in the NBA.
Shaquille O'Neal, whose No. 34 will be raised to the rafters at the Staples Center on Tuesday night, was the first to join HuffPost Live host Marc Lamont Hill.
"It feels special," O'Neal told Hill of the impending honor. "I wish Dr. Jerry Buss was here to celebrate this joyous occassion with me. I know a process like this usually takes five to seven years. It's because of him and his wonderful daughter Jeanie that it's going on this early in my retirement. It's a wonderful night and I owe thanks to a lot of people, two of the people are on this chat today."
O'Neal and Hill were later joined in the chat by former Lakers coach Phil Jackson, current Lakers Executive Vice President Jeanie Buss and former Lakers player Kurt Rambis. Jackson and Buss, the daughter of the late Dr. Buss, were engaged in January.
"The big key on the move with Shaq was for him to take ownership and he took ownership. [He took] the leadership and [decided he] was going to own the season and he did," Jackson reflected. "And that example followed through and the momentum carried us through for another few years after our first championship."
While the conversation focused largely on the Shaq-Kobe-Phil era in Los Angeles, Shaq, Phil, Jeanie and Kurt also weighed in on LeBron James's recent complaints about hard fouls, the Lakers' decision to hire Mike D'Antoni (instead of a certain member of the conversation) as well as upcoming Final Four.
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