Shaquille O’Neal talks Sacramento Kings ownership, DeMarcus Cousins

Sacramento Kings' Chris Mullin and Shaquille O'Neal at opening night of the 2013-14 NBA season. (Photo: Kimani David)

When it comes to owning a piece of the Sacramento Kings, Shaquille O’Neal would characterize himself as a “loud silent owner”.

The 42-year-old O’Neal made that remark while recently speaking with Dime Magazine. The Sacramento Kings minority owner touched on a number of topics involving the franchise, including how much say he has in team operations.

“Every now and then, they’ll consult me on moves,” O’Neal said to Dime. “I’m not the main man, but I’m part of the team. Vivek (Ranadivé) is the ultimate team player. Pete (D’Alessandro) is a team player. I’m not a loud owner that goes around and says I did this and I did that. But I’m there.”

O’Neal also spoke about his relationship with Sacramento Kings starting center DeMarcus Cousins. The future hall of famer has advised Cousins to keep playing with emotion and “passion”.

“I want my big man to be mean,” O’Neal said. “I don’t want my big man smiling all the time, so I don’t mind. All the greatest players were angry, and they talked all the time. Charles Barkley, myself, so many others. But we also put up numbers, we were positive and did the right things in the community.

“Cousins will get technicals,” the Sacramento Kings minority owner added. “he’s going to argue with the referees. That’s called passion and you never want to take a guy’s passion away.”

O’Neal was asked about the departure of Isaiah Thomas as well. The four-time NBA champion said he has a close relationship with the former Sacramento Kings point guard, but that he hopes to see him do well with the Phoenix Suns.

“As players, we have to do what’s best for us,” O’Neal said. “There was differences in the role and amount of money he wanted and things didn’t match up. He wanted to do something else. You can only wish him well.”

O’Neal touched on more topics besides the Sacramento Kings in the interview. You can read the conversation in its entirety over at Dime.

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About: Jonathan Santiago

Jonathan Santiago serves Cowbell Kingdom as senior editor specializing in writing, podcasting and video production. He also handles the majority of CK’s day-to-day beat coverage of the Kings.