Whitlock sent the following tweet to “Inside the NBA” before Tuesday’s season-opening game between the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat began:
Anyone who follows basketball can tell you that Shaquille O’Neal is not a member of the Dwight Howard fan club. In fact, Shaq pretty much hates Dwight. Perhaps he is threatened by Howard’s talent and the fact that he is following directly in his footsteps by starting with the Magic and going to the Lakers. Whatever the case, O’Neal recently criticized Howard’s game once again and said he would take Brook Lopez over him as a center.
“We as players, we always watch people before us,” Shaq said during an NBA.com roundtable discussion last week, according to ESPN.com. “When I came in it was Patrick Ewing and Hakeem Olajuwon, guys who played like true centers who played inside. What we have now are centers that are going to the European style, which is a lot of pick-and-roll. Dwight Howard, who’s a pick-and-roll player, some people say he’s the best center in the league, but me being an old-school center, I’m going to go with Robin Lopez and Andrew Bynum because they play with their back to the basket.”
Of course, Shaq was referring to Nets center Brook Lopez but said “same thing” when corrected.
“Like if you want to go to go to flash and dunking and the pick and roll, you gotta go with Dwight Howard,” he continued. “But me, the last true original dundaughta (slang for big timer), I’m going with Andrew Bynum and which Lopez? Brook. Brook Lopez.”
Yawn. I’m not a Howard fan by any means, but listening to Shaq toot his own horn while downplaying Dwight’s ability is exhausting. Whether it’s the fact that Howard has had to face less double teams or that the competition around the league isn’t as steep, Shaq can’t seem to stop patting himself on the back. And now he’s the original “dundaughta?” Give me a break.
Chest bump to Black Sports Online
There are a number of different ways an adult’s message to a group of children could be lost in translation, but Hooters is universal. Shaquille O’Neal claims he once proved that as he was coaching his young son’s team to a championship victory. On Thursday night in New York, Shaq was honored as one of the “Fathers of the Year.” During his speech, he gave a couple of examples of times in which his great parenting skills were put to use.
“We made it all the way to the championship game,” Shaq explained according to Sports Illustrated. “We were down by eight with two minutes left. So I gave the only speech I could think to give. I said, ‘If we win this, I’ll take you to Hooters.’ And we won by six, so I guess it worked!”
Shaq has six kids, so he knows a little something about what motivates children. He also has four NBA championship rings, so he knows quite a bit about winning big games as well. The effectiveness of motivational speeches may vary from young children to professional athletes, but Hooters speaks to everyone. Who doesn’t like delicious wings and — well, you know. And if you can’t trust a massive guy who does stuff like this, who can you trust?
H/T Prep Rally
Photo credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE
We knew there was a reason Shaq was added to the outstanding TNT “Inside the NBA” pregame/postgame show, and it’s not because of his superior basketball analysis and insight. Oh no, it’s specifically for the comedic value he adds and goofy stunts he does, like the one seen above.
How can you watch Shaq pull out a cutout of Weight Watchers Charles Barkley in drag and dance with it for nearly a full minute while singing to “Scatman” and not laugh? It’s impossible. Hilarious stuff.
Chest bump I am a GM
Shaq apparently is trying to save face after everyone laughed at the report that he was going to speak with the Magic about their vacant GM job. The former All-NBA center turned analyst issued a statement on Thursday where he denied interest in the position.
“When I first heard about the vacancy for the Orlando Magic general manager position, I was clearly intrigued. “I was drafted by the Magic, I have a great love for the franchise, and I have made the city of Orlando my home. Additionally, I have great admiration and respect for the DeVos family.
“However, this is not a job I have an interest in pursuing,” his statement says. “I feel very fortunate to be with TNT and to have the best job in sports. I look forward to many more years with Charles (Barkley), Kenny (Smith) and E.J. (Ernie Johnson). I wish the best for the Magic and I am confident that they will select a great GM and coach.”
At least he did admit he was intrigued when he first heard about it. But now he’s saying he’s not interested in pursuing?
What Shaq’s doing is pulling the old “I know you’re going to break up with me, so I’m going to break up with you first before you have a chance to make me look bad.”
When the story was first reported on Wednesday night, I figured the interest had to be coming from Shaq’s side, not Orlando’s. Seriously, how many people who have a GM vacancy think to themselves, “You know who would be great for this job? Shaq.” Nobody. Marc Stein pretty much confirmed that when he said Shaq was lobbying for the position behind the scenes.
Like I said, Shaq issued the statement to try and save face by making it seem like he’s pulling out of consideration for a job he never really was being considered for in the first place.
The Magic announced this week that they fired GM Otis Smith and head coach Stan Van Gundy. While there has been very little information about the potential replacements, one report says former Magic center Shaquille O’Neal could meet with the team to talk about the GM job. Yes, that Shaq.
According to Chris Broussard, Shaq, who was drafted by the Magic and played for them from 1992-96, is being considered for a role in the front office. The Magic believe Shaq could be instrumental in trying to retain Dwight Howard who will be a free agent after the season.
Yes, I know what you’re thinking: Aren’t Shaq and Howard enemies? Apparently not.
Broussard reports that the “two privately have a friendly relationship and often send text messages to one another.” Shaq reportedly has been a confidante for Howard this season, and they apparently bonded over their issues with Stan Van Gundy, who also coached O’Neal in Miami.
Well that certainly explains all of Howard’s odd behavior this season.
Shaq is a clown whose specialty is marketing, publicity, and being funny. His only interactions with management during his playing days were when he yelled at Lakers owner Jerry Buss “pay me” during training camp. None of that qualifies him as a salary cap or personnel expert, so I’m not sure what Orlando is thinking.
After several weeks of hype, TNT’s “Inside the NBA” finally held their “shirtoff” competition between Shaq and Charles Barkley to show Chuck’s progress on Weight Watchers. It’s weird that so many people were drawn to see what these two knuckleheads would look like topless, but that’s what happened.
Barkley appeared to be in decent shape, but he was blown away by Shaq who was in really good shape. Honestly, Shaq looked better for the shirtoff competition than he did at any point in his playing career. It’s actually kind of sad.
The best part about the shirtoff — you know, if there is a good thing about these doofuses going shirtless — was Shaq having six-pack abs painted on his stomach. That, I have to say, was pretty damn funny.
Below is a side-by-side look at each man: