Shaq Says 'Laws of Physics' Are to Blame for Stuckey's Hard Fall
"When you understand the laws of physics like I do, the laws of physics state that a body in motion stays in motion," Shaq said. "So when you have two objects that meet in the air, the smaller object is gonna fall much harder at the same rate of speed. I've never been the type of player to take anybody out. I was going for the ball, little guy ran into a brick wall, and you know, he fell, and he added a little bit to the end. The referees looked at how he fell I think. But it's nothing I'm worried about, I've never been that type of player. If you understand physics like that, anytime you come in there out of control like that and you run into a brick wall, you're going to get that effect."
"I know I was going for the ball. I've played 17 years, I'm not a dirty player. I don't get dunked on. Little guy tried to come in my house, I wanted to block the shot, and he fell. If you apply the laws of physics, you know why he fell the way he fell. Period."
Physics had its role in Stuckey's fall, but Shaq had more than a little do do with it himself.
I don't think this was a dirty play by Shaq, but it definitely was intended to make sure that Stuckey didn't get an easy layup or dunk at the Suns' expense. Shaq was just protecting the paint, by going for the ball while at the same time making sure that Stuckey didn't end up with an and-1 opportunity.
If the referees used Shaq's follow through as the deciding factor on the flagrant two call though, it's hard to argue: after making contact, Shaq continued a downward motion with his arms, making it look like he was throwing Stuckey to the floor. But that really wasn't the case, right? Like Shaq said, it was simply a matter of basic physics.