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Old 10-17-2008, 10:06 PM   #1
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Default Shaq says Spurs will pay for "Hack-A-Shaq"

Suns' O'Neal says Spurs will pay for 'Hack-a-Shaq'
Brak Huerta, SpursReport; the Associated Press contributed to this report
Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Shaquille O'Neal says he'll get back at the San Antonio Spurs for using the "Hack-a-Shaq" strategy in games where they led handily in last season's playoffs.

"The only thing I call cowardly is when you're up by 10 and do it," O'Neal told Phoenix radio station KTAR. "That's a coward move and [Spurs coach Gregg Popovich] knows that and I'll make them pay for it."

O'Neal said he thinks the "Hack-a-Shaq," where teams foul O'Neal, a notoriously poor free-throw shooter, whenever possible late in games, makes the game less appealing to fans. He said he didn't have a problem with the ploy, only the timing.

O'Neal shot 59 percent from the field last season, but only 50 percent from the free-throw line.

There was talk that the NBA might change the rules on the "Hack-a-Shaq" during the offseason, but that didn't happen. O'Neal was asked if he was disappointed the rules weren't changed. "[The strategy] doesn't work," O'Neal said on KTAR. "You know San Antonio tried it but they went home a couple weeks after we went home.

"I just have to go to the line and hit them and make them pay, and I will, I'm not worried."

At KTAR, talk show hosts Gambo & Ash took calls about the development and wondered on their blog (titled "Shut up Shaq") why O'Neal made these comments now.

"Shaq called out the Spurs for their “Hack-a-Shaq” method Gregg Popovich and the Spurs’ coaching staff used last year in the playoffs. He promises to “make them pay.” Gambo wonders why The Daddy waited this long to make this “threat” and feels he should be more concerned about trying to find a way to shut down Tim Duncan, instead of shutting up Popovich. Ash knows this is definitely too little, too late."

Someone has the first round elimination blues.
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