On Friday, Shaquille O’Neal became the latest Lakers legend honored in sculpture form at the Staples Center. Shaq joined fellow NBA legends Phil Jackson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jerry West, and Kobe Bryant at an unveiling ceremony, during which the imposing statue was formally revealed.
Weighing in at well over 1,000 pounds, the huge sculpture depicts O’Neal dangling from the rim as a freshly dunked ball makes its way through the net. At nine feet tall, the statue is just a bit larger than the man himself.
This is the eighth statue honoring a Los Angeles sports icon to be unveiled at the Staples Center’s Star Plaza—though O’Neal is one of the few to have actually played in the building. Not only that, but, as Lakers president Jeanie Buss pointed out in announcing the statue last year, O’Neal broke ground for the venue in 1998 and was a huge part of its early success, helping to bring the Lakers three titles immediately after it opened.
Here are a few pictures of the impressive statue, which was sculpted by Omri Amrany and Julie Rotblatt-Amrany. Hanging ten feet above the ground, it looks rather terrifying to walk under.