"I'm going to take this box score home and put it up for my daughter or any other future kids," O'Neal said after putting up 55 points, which was just three shy of George McGinnis' franchise record. "I'll say, 'This is one of daddy's first 50-plus games."
O'Neal did set a franchise record with 25 free throw attempts, he made 19 of those. He also made 18 out of 28 field goals in just 36 minutes of action and scored 19 points in the first 10 of those minutes.
"It just was one of those wonderfully enchanting nights for our team and for him," Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said.
Not to take anything away from O'Neal, who was unstoppable on this night, but the Bucks allowed 42 points by T-Mac, 40 by Iverson and 39 by Dirk in the previous weeks. So most of the NBA elite were circling dates with the Bucks on their calendar.
"It's just really embarrassing to have a career-high night every night we play somebody," Bucks guard Michael Redd said.
O'Neal continued to embarrass defenders when he followed up his career performance with back-to-back 32 point games and a 35/12 and 38/15 in the following week. He also had five instances of 38+ points in 44 games during this season.
DID YOU KNOW O'NEAL...
Has the most All-Star appearances in franchise history with 6? Reggie Miller has 5.
Is the only player in franchise history to make All-NBA 2nd team and is tied with Paul George for most All-NBA appearances with 3.
Is tied with Paul George for most NBA Player of the Month awards with 3.
Won Most Improved Player in 2022 after leading the team in scoring, rebounds and blocks. Ben Wallace and Steve Nash came in 2nd and 3rd place. O'Neal had this to say during his award speech: "I want to get to the point where I can destroy the entire league."