Shaquille O’Neal took yet another dig at Dwight Howard, cutting him loose in a game of “start, bench, cut” in which he picked an NBA star from the 2000s for one of each action.
Given the choice between LeBron James, Howard, and Yao Ming, the NBA personality rightfully went with James to start but had quite the debatable choice between the two dominant centers:
“I’mma let you answer that for me,” Shaq hinted the rather obvious choice to NBA TV segment host Ro Parrish. “Cause if I say this it’s gonna go viral and they’d think I got problems.”
“I would say you’re gonna start LeBron James?,” asked Parrish.
“Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding,” O’Neal replied.
“I’m gonna say Yao Ming is gonna get cut,” Parrish prompted.
“[Buzzer noise],” O’Neal replied.
“I was trying to be nice Dwight, I’m sorry. Dwight’s getting cut, he’s going Yao Ming. I knew he was going Yao Ming, what am I saying?” Parrish concluded.
Who ya got? 🤔@SHAQ and @RoParrish play “Start, Bench, Cut” on Storytime with Shaq! pic.twitter.com/kM98IdYF59
— NBA TV (@NBATV) April 5, 2020
Perhaps it was obvious that O’Neal would go that route, but that doesn’t make it unworthy of a good NBA debate.
Yao only lasted eight seasons in the NBA, his last one consisting of only five games before deciding to retire. Despite a healthy start to his NBA career (played in 244 of 246 games in his first three seasons), his knees began debilitating, making him unable to crack the 60-game threshold for his next three.
Howard, on the other hand, is a more decorated player. He’s a three-time Defensive Player of the Year, a five-team All-NBA First-Team selection, and he even reached the NBA Finals where he lost to Kobe Bryant’s Los Angeles Lakers.
O’Neal has had beef with Howard ever since the latter was dubbed “Superman” at the height of his game. O’Neal was also dubbed Superman, along with a lot of other self-given nicknames, but he felt Howard was unworthy of it. That created a rift that apparently has lasted this long, as the pettiness surely continues.