Nov 14, 2008

Sports - Basketball;Shaq becomes NBA's 10th all-time scorer

MIAMI (AFP) – Phoenix Suns giant centre Shaquille O'Neal vaulted past John Havlicek to become the 10th all-time leading scorer in National Basketball Association history.

O'Neal scored 18 points and grabbed 13 rebounds in the Suns 94-82 loss to Houston on Wednesday.

O'Neal now has a 26,402 career points, just ahead of Havlicek's 26,395. If he stays on pace this season he could pass Dominique Wilkins (26,668), Oscar Robertson (26,710) and Hakeem Olajuwon (26,946).

Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387) is the NBA's all-time scoring leader.

The 36-year-old O'Neal also passed the 12,000 mark for rebounds on Wednesday and currently sits at 12,003, good for 19th on the all-time list.

O'Neal, who also played for Orlando, Los Angeles Lakers and Miami, was front and centre for another reason in Wednesday's contest after being involved in a third quarter shoving match.

The game turned physical in the final half-minute of the third when the Suns' Matt Barnes shoved Rafer Alston, who was attempting to set a pick. Houston's Tracy McGrady hit a jumper and Houston's Alston went after Barnes.

Canadian Steve Nash then charged into the melee and McGrady pushed him to the floor. O'Neal then went in as a peacemaker and shoved McGrady and the pile to the floor.

"It was just a shoving match. I saw somebody push my brother Steve and so I came to his aid," O'Neal said. "It wasn't anything good. That's what I do, move piles."

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