No. 5 - Shaquille O'Neal

Had the ride not been so brief, <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="PESPT008523" title="Shaquille O'Neal" href="/topic/sports/basketball/shaquille-oneal-PESPT008523.topic">Shaq</a> could have challenged <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="PESPT008370" title="Alonzo Mourning" href="/topic/sports/basketball/alonzo-mourning-PESPT008370.topic">Alonzo Mourning</a> for one of the top spots on this list. Instead, everything soured after the 2006 championship, leaving O'Neal as much villain as hero in franchise lore. The fan base wanted to embrace Shaq far longer.
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( Andrew D. Bernstein, NBAE/Getty Images / July 20, 2004 )

Had the ride not been so brief, Shaq could have challenged Alonzo Mourning for one of the top spots on this list. Instead, everything soured after the 2006 championship, leaving O'Neal as much villain as hero in franchise lore. The fan base wanted to embrace Shaq far longer.

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