Forgotten Box Score Series: Remembering Shaq's astonishing triple-double

Orlando Magic v Washington Bullets
Orlando Magic v Washington Bullets / Focus On Sport/GettyImages
2 of 3

A closer look at Shaq’s monster triple-double

Shaq recorded 24 points, 28 rebounds (with 10 of them being on the offensive end), and 15 blocks. The 28 rebounds and 15 blocks both ended up being career-highs for O’Neal. Additionally, Shaq’s 15 blocks are tied for 2nd-most all-time in a game, behind only fellow “forgotten box score series” member Elmore Smith, who blocked 17 shots in a game.

The difference is that O’Neal played 36 minutes in his matchup and every block was crucial as Orlando only won by two points. Meanwhile, Smith played the full 48 minutes of his record-setting night in 1973 and his Los Angeles Lakers won comfortably by 13 points.

In O’Neal’s prime, he was often averaging 26–29 PPG and 9–10 free throw attempts per game. Uncharacteristically, in this record-setting game, he scored a modest 24 points and attempted just one free throw (missing it).

O’Neal did shoot an extremely efficient 12/18 from the field, which led all players in FG% that night. Nick Anderson actually led the Magic in scoring with 25 points, while Penny Hardaway stacked the stat sheet with 15 points, 11 rebounds, 7 assists, 3 steals, and 3 blocks.