Sunday , Feb , 10 , 2008 C.Y. Ellis

Mark Cuban Wanted Shaquille O’Neal

Cuban wanted O’Neal, but only if he could get him cheap. He asked Arison if he would consider buying out the remainder of O’Neal’s $100 million contract. The answer was no.

”I talked to Micky, but we didn’t talk specifics,” Cuban writes. ”I just told him that if he ever did buy out Shaq, we would be interested. It never got past that. If they weren’t going to buy Shaq out, nothing was going to happen with us.”

Cuban doesn’t say so, but the Mavs, like just about every NBA team, didn’t believe a hurt O’Neal with a bloated contract would get any takers. Cuban wanted one of the greatest centers ever, but without giving up any of his own roster and without taking on two more years at $20 million annually. Fact is, Miami didn’t really believe it would be able to move O’Neal’s contract, either, given how limited and unhealthy and unathletic he has looked this season. [Click here for more from the Miami Herald.]