‘That’s Shaq’: Dwyane Wade and Gilbert Arenas Justify Shaquille O’Neal’s Controversial Statements About Other Players

Published 02/15/2021, 5:30 AM EST
LOS ANGELES, CA – JULY 16: Shaquille O’Neal is seen at ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live’ on July 16, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by RB/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)


While Shaquille O’Neal had a knack for the game of basketball, unfortunately for some players, he also developed a knack for being on TV. He may be one of the best players to grace the basketball court with his presence, but in today’s media, he is also one of the most entertaining NBA analysts.

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Plenty of players end up going on TV after they retire from active competition, and the nature of the job requires them to comment upon contemporary stars. Unfortunately, the fans of the aforementioned stars often take offense to criticism and label these legends as ‘haters.’

Shaq, who has never refrained from speaking his mind, also gets criticized for being too harsh on modern-day players. However, Dwyane Wade and Gilbert Arenas have a different opinion on the matter.

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Dwyane Wade believes being critical is part of the job

On ‘No Chill with Gilbert Arenas’, Dwyane Wade explained how Shaq opened up his mind to different things. It was Shaq, who, apart from playing, was also on commercials and different media platforms. If it wasn’t for Shaq, Wade wouldn’t know what to do next.

When Wade was about to retire, he revealed that he never wanted to do TV. He believed that TV paints one as a hater, which he didn’t want.

“I was like, ‘I don’t want to do TV. I won’t become a hater.’ I always had this perception that when you get on TV, you become a hater.”

Eventually, Wade did come on TV and now he feels differently. He stated, “When you get on TV, and now that I am, all your job is to talk about what you see.”

He explained this through Draymond and Charles Barkley’s example. In this case, Charles criticized Draymond, and the latter did not like it.

“It’s kind of our job to sit back and watch all play. And if I watch Draymond play, and Draymond got 0 points, 1 rebound, 2 assists, it’s my job to come on TV and talk about that. But it depends on how it is delivered. It can come off as hating or not,” he further explained.

DALLAS – JUNE 20: Series MVP Dwyane Wade #3 and Shaquille O’Neal #32 of the Miami Heat celebrate together after the Heat defeated the Dallas Mavericks in game six of the 2006 NBA Finals on June 20, 2006 at American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas. The Heat won 95-92 and win the series 4-2. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Shaquille O’Neal has a unique approach to motivating

Gilbert Arenas also chimed in with his opinion, supporting Wade. He said, “He comes from an era where the reverse psychology is how you push a player and that’s Shaq.”

Arenas also said that Shaq knew what the weight of his words was, which is why he did it and is still doing it.

He explained that if it was some other player, it wouldn’t matter much. But because it is Shaquille O’Neal, it hits you and it makes the player want to do better.

Shaq’s utter honesty has often attracted criticism. A few even believe that Shaq justifying his harsh comments as motivation is an easy way out.

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And now, Arenas and Wade’s perception has given everyone something to think about. Do you think Shaq is being unnecessarily harsh? Or is he right in being honest about players?

Read Also- What Was The Reason Behind The Infamous Shaquille O’Neal and Dwight Howard Feud?

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Yashima Bhatia

1321 articles

Yashima Bhatia is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports who specialises in providing nuanced predictions and updates for matches. She has a Bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. Yashima's love for playing the game came up at a young age, when the excitement of the games coupled with the intensity of the Playoffs had her hooked.

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