SPORTS

SIDELINE PATROL: No one should be compared to “Shaq”

Peter Silas Pasqua
Peter Silas Pasqua is the sports editor for the Gonzales Weekly Citizen. He can be reached at sports@weeklycitizen.com

Though the years, LSU has been known to manufacture big men who have produced both on the college level and in the NBA.

No one is more note worthy or noticeable than Shaquille O’Neal. It is safe to say he is the godfather of the Tigers’ current string of post players currently playing in the NBA.

This past weekend, a former Tiger stepped up, to sit next to “Shaq” at the dinner table drawing comparisons. While he hasn’t made it to the head of the table and will surely never with someone like O’Neal firmly planted there, Glen “Big Baby” Davis made a name for himself hitting the game winning shot Mother’s Day to defeat the Orlando Magic in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference semifinals, sending the series back to Boston tied.

Davis followed up that performance by hitting two free throws to ice the Celtics’ Game 5 victory in the closing seconds after coming alive during a late stretch that saw Boston outscore the Magic 13-0.

Davis already has a championship ring from his rookie season with the Celtics last season but that was as a bench warmer for Kevin Garnett, whose injury has forced him into the starting lineup. It took O’Neal nearly a decade to gather his first ring, although he now has four of them, leaving “Baby” with a lot of catching up to do.

O’Neal was the first pick of the 1992 NBA Draft and enjoyed individual success from the onset. Since 2000, LSU has had five post players drafted, all with high expectations.

Stromile Swift was the second overall pick in 2000 but has been through four different teams so far and only participated in the playoffs two season. Over his career he is averaging 8.4 points per game and 4.6 rebounds.

Brandon Bass was selected with the 33rd overall pick in the 2005 Draft. He is currently on his second team, the Dallas Mavericks and averaged 11.6 points and 6.8 rebounds per game in his only playoffs this season.

Tyrus Thomas was the fourth overall pick in the 2006 Draft. In two playoff seasons, he is averaging 7.4 points and 4.9 rebounds per game.

Davis was the 37th pick of the 2007 NBA?Draft. In two seasons, he is averaging 5.8 points and 3.5 rebounds per game. However, he has found his scoring touch in the past two games scoring 20 plus points.

Anthony Randolph was the 14th pick last season and averaged 7.9 points and 5.8 rebounds in his rookie season.

O’Neal has averaged 24.7 points and 8.1 rebounds per night over 18 seasons scoring 29.7 in 1999-00 and averaging 13.9 boards his rookie season. In his playoff career consisting of 15 seasons, he averages 25.2 points and 12.1 rebounds per game.

O’Neal is the most dominant “Big Man” ever and no one should ever be compared to him.