In the past few days there have been rumors linking retired NBA star center, Shaquille O’Neal to the vacant General Manger position in the Orlando Magic organization. This would be an interesting homecoming. As many may know O’Neal started his career with the Magic when they chose him as the number one overall pick in the 1992 NBA draft. The newly dubbed, Dr. O’Neal (which he now prefers to be called by his colleagues), has quietly constructed a pretty impressive educational background by earning his bachelors, masters, and now doctorate degree after writing his thesis on “The Value of Humor in Leadership”. His road to academic success began when he was with the Los Angeles Lakers and continued through his retirement.
Despite all of these achievements, the question that comes to hand is if Dr. O’Neal has enough qualifications to fill in the GM position, especially when the team has been looking at different avenues to keep Dwight Howard in Orlando. With Howard being the face of the franchise, every move is delicate especially when he changes his mind every two seconds on whether he wants to stay or leave. It’s safe to say that the ball is in O’Neal’s side of the court. What could be beneficial for Dr. O’Neal is his relationship with Howard. It is up to him to prove he is worthy of the job meaning that if he can convince the Magic that it is in his ability to get Howard to stay then his chances of getting the position increases tremendously.
Whatever the outcome is, Shaquille O’Neal has proven to everyone that you can be athletically gifted, make a name for yourself, and still get an academic degree. One’s physical talent will eventually decline but the education you obtain in your life can take you a long way. In the long run, with the departure of the Nets, it would be nice to see him establish a team in New Jersey, being that he grew up in the streets of Newark. Just a thought, Dr. O’Neal!