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Shaq on HBO’s ‘Winning Time’ LA Lakers series.... “I like it, but...”

Former Los Angeles Lakers star Shaq O’Neal offered his view on HBO Max’s series ‘Winning Time’ based on the rise of the Showtime era Lakers in the 1980s.

Shaquille O'Neal
Jared C. TiltonAFP

The former Laker O’Neal claimed to be a fan of the popular and controversial HBO show “Winning Time,” a scripted series on the rise of the Showtime era Lakers in the 1980s.

“I like it but I don’t like how they depict my good friend Jerry West. But other than that I think it’s very interesting.”

West, the Lakers former general manager, is depicted in early episodes as having a hot temper and the Hall of Famer has asked for an apology and even threatened legal action against the show’s creators.

“Jerry was always kind and compassionate to me. I’ve never seen him have those meltdowns. So I think that portrayal of Mr West was probably false,” said O’Neal.

Despite that, he said he would welcome a second season focused on the Shaq and Kobe Bryant-led Lakers, who won three straight championships starting in 2000. “Let’s do it,” he said.

“I’m the type where you can say or do whatever you want, no problem. I understand the entertainment world,” added O’Neal, who won an Academy Award last month as a producer on “The Queen of Basketball,” a short subject documentary on the life of pioneering star Lusia Harris.

He said a desire to celebrate female athletes was part of what inspired him to work on the documentary and noted that the new Icy Hot campaign sees him partnered with tennis champion Sloane Stephens and National Women’s Soccer League star Rose Lavelle.