Shaquille O'Neal, Kristen Clement, Mateen Cleaves
NAME: Shaquille O'Neal, Kristen Clement, Mateen Cleaves
TEAMS: Los Angeles Lakers, Tennessee Lady Vols, Michigan State
POSITIONS: Center, guard, guard
INJURY: Sprained ankle
OTHER ATHLETES AFFECTED
Football: Ricky Williams, New Orleans Saints; Tony Banks, Baltimore Ravens;
Basketball: Karl Malone, Utah Jazz; Eric Murdock and Brian Skinner, L.A.
Clippers; Derrick Coleman, Charlotte Hornets; Kelvin Cato, Houston Rockets;
Baseball: Todd Dunwoody, Kansas City Royals; Phil Nevin, San Diego Padres;
Hockey: J.J. Daigneault, Phoenix Coyotes; Pavel Trnka, Anaheim Mighty Ducks
HOW IT HAPPENED
After clinching the best record for the season on April 5 by scoring 49
points against the Warriors -- and assuring the Lakers home court advantage in
the playoffs -- O'Neal's left ankle flared up. He sought treatment from the
team trainer an hour before the next game. He also has a sore shoulder, a
hamstring strain, and has complained of general fatigue.
Kristen "Ace" Clement, as she is nicknamed, twisted her ankle in the
morning warm-up the morning of the NCAA championship game. X-rays showed that
there were no broken bones, and she was treated before the game. But she
entered the arena the night of the game on crutches and was visibly limping as
she walked onto the floor.
Cleaves injured his ankle during the third quarter of the men's NCAA
championship game. The injury looked devastating, but he was able to return to
the game later that quarter. He needed crutches after the game to stand for the
In O'Neal's sophomore season at LSU (1990-1991), he averaged 27.6 points and
14.7 rebounds and shot .628 from the field. His rebounding average led the
nation, and he was named national Player of the Year by a majority of polls.
O'Neal joined the Orlando Magic at age 20 as the number one pick of the 1992
draft. In seven seasons, he has captured a scoring title and two field goal
accuracy crowns and powered the Magic into the NBA Finals. He was the youngest
participant ever in the NBA All-Star Game and was named 1993 NBA Rookie of the
Year. Following the 1994-1995 season, O'Neal was named to the 1996 "Dream
Team," which won the gold medal at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. He signed
with the Los Angeles Lakers as a free agent prior to the 1996-1997 season.