One of basketball’s greatest duos were often unstoppable on the court — yet things weren’t always so rosy off the paint. Shaq and Kobe played together for the LA Lakers for eight years between 1996 to 2004. During that period the Lakers went down in history by claiming the league’s fifth ever “three-peat” between 1999-2002. The pair were instrumental to the franchise’s success and it’s one moment from the 1999-00 Western Conference Finals versus Portland Trail Blazers that Shaq recounts as being crucial.
Down by 15 points with 10 minutes to play in Game 7, it looked as if the Lakers were headed out. Yet an alley-oop from Kobe to Shaq, that put the Lakers 5 points back on the up, would crown the greatest Game 7 comeback in NBA history. The Lakers defeated Portland 89-84 and would go on to beat the Indiana Pacers over six games and win the NBA title — the franchise’s first title since 1988.
Shaq recalls how while they weren’t always the best of friends, Kobe and himself always respected one another’s supreme talent and will to win. A trait that is shared, Shaq claims, by all successful business and organizations. So the motto of the day: respect your colleagues and yourself.