'Ring for the King' is Shaq's new goal

Shaquille O'Neal has one purpose in Cleveland: bring an NBA title to LeBron James and the Cavaliers.


"My motto is very simple," the 15-time All-Star center said Thursday. "Win a ring for the King."

Acquired in a trade last week with the Phoenix Suns, O'Neal was introduced Thursday by the Cavaliers, who believe he can be their missing piece.

The city of Cleveland has been waiting since 1964 for one of its three pro sports franchises to win a championship.

During a 30-minute news conference that was more of a TV talk show featuring Shaq, the 37-year-old star said he just wants to fit in with a Cavaliers team that won 66 regular-season games last season but was eliminated in the Eastern Conference Finals by the Orlando Magic.

"We have everybody in place," said O'Neal, who has one year left under contract but feels he can play three more seasons. "There's no excuses. We've just have to get it done."

There is a sense of urgency in Cleveland because James is entering his final year under contract.

O'Neal won three NBA titles with Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers from 2000-02 and another with Dwyane Wade and the Miami Heat in 2006.

LAKERS: Ron Artest is heading to Los Angeles, according to various media reports.

The free-agent forward told CBSSports.com on Thursday that he was leaving Houston to join Bryant and the defending champs.

"I'm definitely going to L.A. -- to sign, yeah," Artest told CBSSports.com. "Lakers, Lakers, Lakers. I'm in L.A. right now."

In a text message to ESPN.com Thursday, Artest wrote: "I am happy to say I am goin' to L.A."

ROCKETS: A person close to the situation tells The Associated Press that Houston is meeting with Los Angeles Lakers forward Trevor Ariza .

The person, who did not want to be identified because the negotiations were ongoing, said Rockets general manager Daryl Morey was meeting with the free agent in Las Vegas.

The meeting was first reported by KRIV-TV in Houston, which also said coach Rick Adelman was meeting with Ariza. The AP source could not confirm that.

PUZZLED PISTON: A day after jumping to Detroit, Ben Gordon told a Chicago radio station Thursday that the Bulls never made a contract offer even though general manager Gar Forman claimed re-signing him was their No. 1 priority.

"I mean they didn't pursue me at all. They didn't even make an offer so it was pretty much a one-man race," Gordon told ESPN Radio 1000 in Chicago.



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