Shaquille O'Neal is recovering after undergoing surgery on his sore big toe on Wednesday.

The procedure, called a cheilectomy, involved shaving bone spurs off the toe.

O'Neal, 30, twice landed on the injured list last season, yet still averaged 27.2 points, 10.7 rebounds, three assists, 2.04 blocked shots and 36.1 minutes in 67 games.

The hulking 7'1", 315-pound centre will likely require eight weeks to recover, meaning he might miss the start of the upcoming regular season.

The three-time defending NBA champion Lakers open against the San Antonio Spurs at the Staples Center on October 29.

O'Neal was drafted first overall as a junior out of Lousiana State by the Orlando Magic in 1992.

He played four seasons for the Magic before signing a free-agent contract with the Los Angeles Lakers on July 18, 1996.

O'Neal has averaged 27.6 points, 12.3 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 2.63 blocks and 37.8 minutes in 675 games, including 669 starts, over 10 NBA seasons with the Magic and Lakers.

Voted one of the NBA's 50 greatest players, he is a career .577 shooter from the field, but only .533 from the free-throw line.