How Many Free Throws Did Shaq Make?


Shaquille O’Neal, also known as Shaq, is considered one of the best basketball players of all time. During his career, he led multiple teams to championship titles and was a dominant force on the court. However, one aspect of his game that often proved to be a challenge was his free throw shooting. In this article, we will delve into Shaq’s free throw struggles and explore how many free throws he actually made.

Shaquille O’Neal’s Free Throw Struggle: A Look at the Numbers

Throughout his career, Shaq’s free throw shooting has been a topic of conversation and analysis. His career free throw percentage stands at 52.7%, which is below the NBA average of 73.2%. Compared to other big men in the league, his percentage is notably lower than players like Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Dwight Howard.

There are a few factors that may have contributed to Shaq’s struggles at the free throw line, such as his large hands, which made it difficult for him to grip the ball properly. Additionally, his shooting technique has often been criticized for being flawed, with a tendency to lean forward and shoot off his toe.

Shaq vs. the Free Throw Line: The Impact on His Career

Shaq’s free throw struggles had a significant impact on his game and team. In many important games, particularly in the playoffs and championships, Shaq’s missed free throws cost his team points and potentially even victories.

Despite his free throw limitations, Shaq still managed to have an impressive career, winning four NBA championships, three NBA Finals MVP awards, and one regular season MVP award. Many argue that his dominance in other areas of the game outweighed his struggles at the free throw line.

A Statistical Breakdown: How Many Free Throws Did Shaq Actually Make?

Throughout his 19-year career, Shaq attempted a total of 11,252 free throws and made 5,935, giving him a total free throw percentage of 52.7%. Compared to other players with similar career length and position, Shaq’s numbers are notably lower, but still impressive considering the sheer volume of attempts.

In important games and seasons, Shaq’s free throw shooting often took center stage. In the 2004 NBA Finals, for example, Shaq missed 27 of his 39 free throw attempts, leading to criticism and frustration from fans and teammates alike.

Shaq’s Free Throws: What We Can Learn From His Technique

Despite his struggles, there are still lessons that can be learned from Shaq’s free throw shooting technique. By examining what he did wrong, we can begin to understand how to improve our own shooting form. Some of the major flaws in Shaq’s technique include his posture, grip, and follow-through. By working on these areas, future players could potentially improve their free throw success rate.

From the Line: A Look at Shaq’s Free Throw Legacy

Shaq’s struggles at the free throw line have had a significant impact on the NBA and basketball community. Many teams and players have adjusted their strategies and training in response to Shaq’s limitations, with many implementing new approaches to improve free throw shooting across the league.

Despite his free throw struggles, Shaq is still remembered as a dominant and influential player, and has left a lasting impact on the game of basketball as a whole.


Overall, Shaq’s struggles at the free throw line are just one aspect of his impressive career. By examining the numbers and analyzing his technique, we can learn from his mistakes and strive to improve our own free throw shooting. Shaq’s legacy serves as a testament to the fact that even the greatest players can have weaknesses, but ultimately it’s their determination and drive that leads to success.

Webben Editor

Hello! I'm Webben, your guide to intriguing insights about our diverse world. I strive to share knowledge, ignite curiosity, and promote understanding across various fields. Join me on this enlightening journey as we explore and grow together.

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