Lakers stalwart Dwight Howard was recently the subject of some rash criticism from NBA Hall of Famer Shaq. Now, the center has responded back but is steering clear of any verbal clash between themselves.
Lakers broke their 10-year-long drought of NBA Championship this year, winning their 17th Larry O’Brien trophy by beating Miami Heat 4-2 in the NBA Finals at Disney World back in October.
Following the glorious feat, several Lakers players took to wild celebrations, which irked Shaq. In a recent podcast, the 4-time NBA Champion cherry-picked several Lakers star whom he claimed had only little contribution behind the team’s triumph, as well as calling out Dwight Howard directly, accusing him of stealing the nickname ‘Superman’.
I wish we could play each other again so I could end this beef: Dwight Howard desires peaceful ways with his critic
This week, Howard came up with a response, but instead of showing any signs of dissent, the center asserted that he only wants to bury the hatchet, as he praised Shaq for his own career achievements and denied to speak against the former player in public.
“Watching Shaq, I was happy because he was a big man and he was killing everybody,” Dwight Howard said in an interview with Etan Thomas of Basketball News, “and I still think he’s probably the most dominant player to ever play the game.”
“But if I had anything negative to say about him, I won’t ever say that in the public eye or say that where people can hear it because I don’t think it’s necessary.”
“He has family, he has kids, he has people who love him,” Howard added.
The 34-year-old, who won his first NBA Championship this year, expressed the desire of facing his critic in the basketball court to let-bygones-be-bygones.
“I just wasn’t brought up that way. I respect him for all the work he’s done” he went on, “I wish we could play each other again so I could end this beef. But I have a lot of love for him and the things he’s done for the sport.
“The way to beat him is to continue to play at a high level and not allow anything that’s negative to seep in my ears and just staying focused,” Howard signed off.