The Orlando Sentinel has spent some time today getting to the bottom of that beef we all forgot ever existed because it centered around a nickname and involved the two NBA players most closely related to Dennis the Menace, and is thus more of a semi-competitive thumb war than anything resembling true beef. But alas, we are returning, hopefully for the final time, to Shaquille O'Neal, Dwight Howard, and the long-forgotten battle for the right to being called "Superman."
The Sentinel has processed its annual revelation that Shaq engaged Dwight in the past for what he calls "marketing," which of course coincides with the paper's annual revelation that Shaq's techniques were inspired by pro wrestling's vision of marketing. A very patient O'Neal explained his technique after the press conference he scheduled to announce the retirement that he'd announced on Twitter last week:
It's all marketing. I help you guys out. You guys help me out. A lot of stuff I say is bullshit, and you all know that, but you guys write it. The fans read it, and I come to the arena and get booed. It's the system. It's all part of the game.
Shaq, who recently declared himself "the emperor of social media network" (although PhD may have been more accurate), also has a good grasp on the 24-hour news cycle. Until, that is, the cycle reaches its tail and then promptly eats itself whole. The Sentinel wonders: "Is Shaq being sincere when he says he's just trying to generate buzz?"
And, my god: are we merely creating buzz by writing about the Sentinel's questioning of Shaq's sincerity regarding his beef that was merely meant to generate buzz? Someone please alert Poynter.
Shaq insists his barbs toward Dwight Howard are ‘all marketing' [Orlando Sentinel]