One day after Lakers owner Jerry Buss said O'Neal found
motivation for losing weight only after being traded by Los Angeles
to Miami, the Heat's All-Star center took issue with the remark.
"I didn't need motivation," O'Neal said. "I needed a real
owner. ... I needed a real owner like Micky Arison. You can quote
me on it."
Buss also said he doesn't regret trading O'Neal to Miami.
"And I don't regret him losing money and his not making the
playoffs," O'Neal said.
On Wednesday, Buss said O'Neal was not willing to get into shape when he played for the Lakers. O'Neal, who played at an estimated
370 pounds during his final season in Los Angeles, is down to about
325 in Miami.
"It seems that the motivation for him to lose weight was to
trade him," Buss said Wednesday. "I suspect if I knew he was
going to lose 60 pounds, I might have made a different decision."