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Lakers acknowledge error in Shaquille O'Neal's retired jersey

April 03, 2013|By Ben Bolch
  • The No. 34 jersey of former Lakers center Shaquille O'Neal is unveiled Tuesday with the V-neck front.
The No. 34 jersey of former Lakers center Shaquille O'Neal is unveiled… (Mark J. Terrill / Associated…)

The moment was perfect.

The jersey wasn't.

On Tuesday night the Lakers retired Shaquille O'Neal's jersey, but they overlooked one not-so-minor detail: O'Neal's name is stretched across the front of a Lakers home jersey instead of the back.

"The oversight will be corrected and a new jersey put up as soon as possible," Lakers spokesman John Black said Wednesday.

PHOTOS: Lakers retire Shaquille O'Neal's No. 34 jersey

A close look at O'Neal's jersey reveals a V-shape neckline associated with the front as opposed to the more rounded one for the back like the other jerseys around hung at Staples Center for Lakers legends Jerry West, Wilt Chamberlain, Elgin Baylor, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, James Worthy, Gail Goodrich and Jamaal Wilkes.

If O'Neal noticed the mistake during his ceremony last night at Staples Center during halftime of the Lakers' 101-81 victory over the Dallas Mavericks, he didn't seem to mind. He graciously thanked the Lakers and their fans for their part in helping him win three NBA championships during his eight seasons with the team.

But fans were already taking swipes at Lakers executives Jim and Jeanie Buss on message boards over the error Wednesday morning.

"Jim had his tailer [sic], err bartender, err scout make the jersey to save money," one wrote.

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