Shaq's Lakers Career By the Numbers

By Brian Martin

On Tuesday night, Shaquille O'Neal's No. 34 Los Angeles Lakers jersey will join the likes of Wilt Chamberlain (13), Jerry West (44), Magic Johnson (32) and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (33) in the rafters at Staples Center as Shaq is immortalized as one of the greatest Lakers of all-time.

In honor of Shaq's outstanding career with the Lakers, let's take a closer look at the impressive numbers he posted in the purple and gold and spotlight some of his best performances.

Regular Season Statistics - Per Game

1996-97255138.155.748.412.53.12.9 (3)26.2^423rd team
1997-98266036.358.452.711.42.42.4 (8)28.3 (2)501st team
1998-99#274934.857.654.010.7 (8)2.31.726.3 (2)382nd team
1999-00*287940.057.452.413.6 (2)3.83.0 (3)29.7 (1)611st team
2000-01*297439.557.251.312.7 (3)3.72.8 (4)28.7 (3)411st team
2001-02*306736.157.955.510.73.02.0 (10)27.2 (2)461st team
2002-03316737.857.462. (6)27.5 (4)481st team
2003-04326736.858.449. (6)21.5 (13)371st team

Rk ranking among top 10 in NBA
^ did not play enough games to qualify for league leaders
# lockout shortened season (50 games)
* Lakers championship season
Green indicates top season in category
Red indicates worst season in category
Note: for games played, only 82-game seasons are used for green/red comparison

Regular Season Statistics - Advanced


Regular Season Statistics - Performances

StatisticWith LA
(8 seasons)
(19 seasons)
Pct with LA
50+ point games2366.7%
40+ point games264953.1%
40+ pts, 20+ reb2450.0%
40+ pts, 10+ reb214348.8%
30+ pts, 20+ reb101855.6%
20+ pts, 20+ reb183650.0%

Check out all of the green during the 1999-2000 season. In the first year under Phil Jackson, a fully healthy Shaq had one of the best seasons of his entire career. At 28 years old, he won his second scoring title (29.7 points per game) and the only one he would win as a Laker. He also led the league in field goal percentage (57.4%), finished second in rebounding (13.6 per game) and third in blocks (3.0 per game). He averaged a career-high 40.0 minutes per game and missed only three games all season, the highest percentage of games played in a non-lockout season during his tenure in L.A.

During the 1999-2000 season, Shaq led the lakers on winning streaks of 19, 16 and 11 games. The 19-game streak and 11-game streak were separated by a single loss. During this stretch of 30 wins in 31 games, Shaq had a special 28th birthday with one of his dominant performances

I Love L.A.
Mar. 6, 2000: Lakers @ Clippers | Box Score

The Lakers took the Staples Center floor as visitors to the Clippers on this night, but the building belonged to Shaq, who posted career highs with 61 points and 23 rebounds against their arena co-tenants. Going up against the likes of Michael Olowokandi, Pete Chilcutt and Maurice Taylor, Shaq dominated the paint -- going 24-of-35 (68.6%) from the field and adding 13-of-22 (59.1%) from the line to get his 61 points. He also grabbed a career-best 23 rebounds and dished three assists in his 45 minutes on the floor in the Lakers' 123-103 win.

Hack-a-Shaq This!
Nov. 19, 1999: Bulls @ Lakers | Box Score

How do you score 41 points on 13 shots without shooting any threes? First, you make 11 of your 13 field goal attempts (84.6%). Second, you get sent to the free throw line 31 times and make 19 of them (61.3%) -- as Shaq did against the Bulls in November 1999. The free throws made and attempted were both career highs for Shaq, who was plagued with poor free throw shooting throughout his career. Many teams tried to employ the Hack-a-Shaq strategy to try to slow the big man down. But there was no slowing down Shaq on this night, as he finished with 41 points, 17 rebounds and seven blocks in the Lakers' 103-95 win.

All-Around Brilliance
Mar. 23, 2001: Wizards @ Lakers | Box Score

The first image many people see when they picture Shaq is that of a giant amongst men, dominating the competition with his mixture of size and strength. Because of that imposing presence, Shaq was routinely double and triple teamed throughout his career. There were plenty of times that Shaq powered through the extra defenders, but the underrated passer often made smart decisions and found teammates either cutting to the basket for open layups or on the perimeter for open jumpers. In this game against the Wizards in 2001, Shaq finished with eight assists to go along with his 40 points (15-of-25 FG and an unbelievable 10-of-13 FT), 17 rebounds and five blocks in just 38 minutes.

Shaq had two triple-doubles in his 19-year career. The first came on Nov. 20, 1993, when Shaq posted an amazing 24 points, 28 rebounds and 15 blocks as a member of the Orlando Magic. The second came on Apr. 11, 2006,with Shaq tallying 15 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists as a member of the Miami Heat. He never recorded a triple-double with the Lakers, but had many performances like this one against Washington that showed he was more than just post scorer.

Apr. 2, 1998: Lakers @ Nets | Box Score

Shaq's first 50-point game with the Lakers (he had one previously with the Orlando Magic) came in his home state of New Jersey on Apr., 2, 1998. The Newark-born Diesel scored 50 points of 18-of-26 (69.2%) shooting from the field and an impressive 14-of-20 (70%) from the free throw line, and added nine rebounds and two assists in the Lakers' 117-106 win.

But Shaq's Lakers' tenure cannot be measured simply with regular season statistics. The Diesel did some of his best work when it counted most -- the NBA Playoffs -- as he led the Lakers to three straight titles from 2000 to 2002, winning Finals MVP honors each time. Let's take a closer look at Shaq's playoff numbers.

Playoff Statistics - Per Game


Playoff Statistics - Advanced


Playoff Statistics - Performances

StatisticWith LA
(8 seasons)
(19 seasons)
Pct with LA
50+ point games000
40+ point games111291.7%
40+ pts, 20+ reb44100.0%
40+ pts, 10+ reb111291.7%
30+ pts, 20+ reb91090.0%
20+ pts, 20+ reb121580.0%

Playoff Career Highs
Apr. 25, 1997: Blazers @ Lakers | Game 1, First Round, Lakers win series 3-1 | Box Score
Apr. 23, 2000: Kings @ Lakers | Game 1, First Round, Lakers win series 3-2 | Box Score

Shaq posted his career playoff high of 46 points twice -- both in the Western Conference playoffs. The first came against the Portland Trail Blazers in 1997 when he posted 46 points on 17-of-27 (63%) shooting from the field and 12-of-18 (66.7%) from the line, along with 11 rebounds, two blocks and two assists. Shaq's Game 1 performance helped the Lakers hold home court and eventually win the series in four games.

The second 46-point performance also came in Game 1 of a First Round playoff series -- this time in 2000 against the Sacramento Kings. Shaq was unstoppable posting the 46 points on 21-of-33 shooting (63.6%) from the field and 4-of-5 (80%) from the line, along with 17 rebounds, five blocks and two steals as the Lakers topped the Kings 117-107 in the opening game of a spirited five-game series. The Lakers would prevail in a precursor of great playoff series to come between the intra-state rivals.

Back to Back
May 6, 2001: Kings @ Lakers | Game 1, Western Conference Semifinals, Lakers win series 4-0 | Box Score
May 8, 2001: Kings @ Lakers | Game 2, Western Conference Semifinals, Lakers win series 4-0 | Box Score

On the Lakers' road to back-to-back titles, they rolled through the Western Conference Playoffs without losing a single game, sweeping the Blazers in the First Round, the Kings in the Conference Semifinals and the Spurs in the Conference Finals. In the first two games of the Lakers-Kings series in the semis, Shaq posted back-to-back 40+point, 20+ rebound games as the Kings had no answer for the Big Aristotle's dominance.

In Game 1, he scored 44 points, grabbed 21 rebounds, blocked seven shots and even added four assists for good measure as the Lakers edged out the 108-105 victory. Two days later, the game was once again decided by single digits, but Shaq's 43 points, 20 rebounds, three blocks and two assists were too much for the Kings to handle. In two games he combined for 87 points, 41 rebounds and 10 blocks as the Lakers took a 2-0 series lead to Sacramento and finished off the sweep.

The Answer
June 8, 2001: 76ers @ Lakers | Game 2, NBA Finals, Lakers win series 4-1 | Box Score

The Lakers pulled off an unprecedented run during the 2001 NBA Playoffs, going 15-1 on the way to their second consecutive championship. After steamrolling through the Western Conference with an unblemished 11-0 record, the Lakers were stunned by Allen Iverson and the Philadelphia 76ers in Game 1 of the NBA Finals, losing in overtime at the Staples Center. The Lakers would not lose another game in the series, and it all started with Game 2, as the Lakers evened the series behind a brilliant performance by Shaq.

After scoring 44 points in Game 1 only to be outdone by Iverson's 48, Shaq put on a clinic in Game 2. The big man flirted with a quadruple-double, finishing the game with 28 points, 20 rebounds, nine assists and eight blocks in L.A.'s 98-89 victory. Shaq had arguably his greatest game on the grandest stage of all. With the Lakers in danger of falling behind 0-2 at home, Shaq showed off his full skill set to lead the Lakers to victory. A week later, the Lakers clinched the series in Philadelphia, with Shaq winning his second straight Finals MVP award.