Shaquille O’Neal is stirring up trouble again with his comments stemming from a recent episode of The Big Podcast With Shaq. While discussing Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving and his part-time player status, O’Neal casually stated that things would get physical if he and Irving were on the same team.
“I don’t see how the team could put up with that, I’m just saying,”O’Neal said. “If he was on my team, I’d have to put hands on him.
“I know for a fact that these windows of winning championships, you don’t have them a lot,” he continued. “All that stuff just playing on the road, you can’t get in no rhythm like that.”
I think most of the vaxxed crowd can understand Shaq’s would-be frustration with a teammate not doing whatever it takes to win a championship. In this instance, doing whatever it takes means being vaccinated, not “immunized” like Aaron Rodgers. O’Neal is right about that window to win a title not staying open long. It may not seem like it, but this is year three of Kyrie and Kevin Durant in Brooklyn. Durant sat out that first year healing his Achilles, but the clock is ticking on this core, which added James Harden last year.
By letting Kyrie be a part-time player, the Nets buckled under the pressure of trying to win a title. Brooklyn took a stance before the season began, then doubled down, only to flip quicker than pancakes. Brooklyn’s front office saw the team’s direction and what others were doing in the East and decided they really do need Irving’s offensive production. So, here he is playing road games only. The NBA playoffs are going to be mighty interesting this year.
Shaq also touched on bonding with teammates during his title runs and how hard that is when a key player can only play road games. It was pretty damn clear all along that Irving had, and still has, no intention to get any vaccine or booster related to COVID-19. All his talk about thinking it over and doing his own research was bullshit. This was Irving’s plan the entire time. He just sat back until he got his way. So, while Shaq’s sentiment is certainly felt, I don’t think any of those threats would have done much to change Irving’s mind on his stance. O’Neal has threatened to kick Charles Barkley’s ass for years on TNT, and we see how that’s played out.