Shaq Home After 103-Degree Fever
%mlink(STRY:; PHOTO:NY107-081802; AUDIO:%)
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) _ Shaquille O’Neal failed to show up Sunday at a youth basketball camp and charity game bearing his name because of an illness, the Los Angeles Times reported.
The Los Angeles Lakers star was resting at home Sunday after he was hospitalized Thursday with a 103-degree fever, the newspaper reported in Monday’s editions. O’Neal was released Friday and told by doctors to rest and drink fluids, according to his agent, Perry Rogers.
``We’re awaiting the results of the tests,″ Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak told the newspaper. ``Right now, that’s where it stands. It is our assumption he would not have been released had there not been some improvement. That being said, we still don’t know what caused the fever.″
People paid up to $250 each for tickets to the two-day clinic and a celebrity game Sunday night, which was supposed to feature O’Neal and other NBA players. The organizers of the event _ the Shaquille O’Neal Tampa Celebrity Basketball Weekend _ were at a loss to explain O’Neal’s absence, unaware of the NBA star’s illness.
``Everyone’s disappointed: the kids, the parents, the community,″ said promoter Darryl Madison of Paramount Celebrity Management Co.
O’Neal had a contract with the event paying him more than $50,000, Madison said. Toronto’s Vince Carter, Portland’s Dale Davis and former NBA star Robert Parish were at the game.
O’Neal also did not attend a dinner with Florida Gov. Jeb Bush on Friday that was part of the camp program.
Calls by The AP to O’Neal’s agents and a Lakers spokesman were not returned.