Earlier than the Philadelphia 76ers whooped the Los Angeles Lakers on TNT final week, Shaquille O’Neal used his platform on ‘Contained in the NBA’ to tear into Ben Simmons for sitting out this season. Shaq declared Simmons was a ‘crybaby’ and known as out the 25-year-old ahead for being unable to deal with criticism.
“Nice gamers get criticized,” Shaq mentioned. “However the nice gamers additionally step as much as the criticism and carry out. So this different man, I don’t respect him. I’d eliminate him.”
Watch the complete clip of Shaq on Simmons right here. O’Neal’s scathing rant went viral, partly as a result of he voiced the issues many NBA followers are considering whereas Simmons sits out. Simmons has maintained it is a psychological well being concern, and that he isn’t able to getting again on the ground for the 76ers. His commerce request has been probably the most weird storyline of the season stemming again to his poor efficiency in final 12 months’s playoffs in opposition to the Atlanta Hawks. We now have a full timeline of Simmons scenario right here.
Simmons heard Shaq’s rant and apparently didn’t recognize it. In keeping with Shaq, Simmons despatched him direct messages on social media to confront him about his rant.
O’Neal detailed his DM dialog with Simmons on The Huge Podcast with Shaq with out absolutely airing out the small print. Apparently Simmons was upset Shaq would criticize a fellow LSU Tiger. Shaq advised Simmons he’s leaving his “man on the market,” in reference to Joel Embiid, who has loved an MVP-caliber season with out Simmons on the ground.
“He bought in my DM and mentioned some issues,” O’Neal mentioned of Simmons. “ I mentioned some issues again.”
There are a couple of parallels between Shaq and Simmons apart from them taking part in for a similar faculty. Like Shaq, Simmons struggled immensely as a free throw shooter. Like Simmons, Shaq shared headline standing with one other teammate in Kobe Bryant, and it wasn’t at all times a straightforward relationship.
Shaq mentioned he now appears to be like again on his profession and needs he and Kobe by no means nervous about whose staff it was. It’s recommendation he thinks Simmons ought to take to coronary heart when he thinks about his relationship with Embiid.
“I noticed this after I left LA,” Shaq mentioned on the podcast. “I don’t need to spend my complete profession preventing for a ineffective title. ‘Shaq you the person. Shaq, this your staff.’ In actuality, what the f*** does all that imply? It don’t imply nothing. I may have received eight, 9 championships with that man (Kobe Bryant) as an alternative of us each arguing about whose staff it’s.”
“Don’t struggle over ineffective titles,” Shaq mentioned. “Battle for one another.”
Simmons nonetheless needs a commerce from the 76ers regardless of being underneath contract for 3 years after this one. Philly is barely keen to commerce him for a bundle that nets them one other star, and to date that hasn’t occurred. The standoff continues because the commerce deadline approaches.
The Simmons scenario is layered. However after his DMs to Shaq, it positive looks as if Simmons isn’t getting any higher at dealing with criticism.