Cover Image for “A 36-year-old Shaquille O’Neal schooled Superman Dwight Howard and took his moniker back!”: When a near retirement Shaq decided to do the CP3 nutmeg on Dwight Howard in the 2009 All-Star game

“A 36-year-old Shaquille O’Neal schooled Superman Dwight Howard and took his moniker back!”: When a near retirement Shaq decided to do the CP3 nutmeg on Dwight Howard in the 2009 All-Star game

Arun Sharma
|Mon Mar 07 2022


Shaquille O’Neal was spry for his age – he was moving like a moose at the age of 36.

Shaquille O’Neal played for the Phoenix Suns in the 2008-09 season. After a brief hiatus away from the All-Star Selection, Big Shaq made it back to the roster. Leading the Suns to a second-place standing that season, Shaq showed glimpses of the juggernaut he once was.

In his heyday, Shaq was someone who could move a wall – such was his brute strength. He had a rule made after him, and that is all anyone has to know about how dominant he was. When players of such caliber start to get weary around the knees, any flash of their heyday brings people to their feet.

The exact thing happened when Big Diesel squared off against his nickname namesake Dwight Howard. Howard was in his defensive prime in the 08-09 season but was humbled by his predecessor in the All-Star game. Howard was mic’d up and was teasing Shaq to pull something off. Boy did he pull a couple of nuts because he Megged Dwight and had a quick 1-2 with Chris Paul before finishing with a flurry at the rim.

Also Read:  “It’s our building, don’t forget that sh*t”: Shaq tells the Los Angeles Clippers to win 17 championships before covering up the Lakers jerseys during home games

Shaquille O’Neal does not like it when Dwight calls himself the Superman – that was and always will be Shaq’s nickname

Shaquille O’Neal was superman before anyone else in the league – he even had his cars adorn the S sprawled across the chest of the DC superhero. So when Dwight Howard decided to wear a cape and Meteor Jam (cue Kuruko no Baske) in the Dunk contest, Shaq Daddy knew he had to get one back.

Their careers are similar in the sense of where they started and playing with Kobe Bryant in search of rings. Despite that Dwight and Shaq were like Chalk and Cheese. It was a typical old head meets new hot-head, and Howard had to be brought down a few rungs. Orlando Magic may have been too small for Dwight, but she definitely should have shown more respect to the OG Superman.

It may look silly that a feud over a nickname has lasted for more than a decade and a half at this point. But everyone knows that is just a façade to cover up the fact that they genuinely do not like each other.

Also Read: “Kobe Bryant wouldn’t talk to press guys Shaq spoke with and vice versa”: Phil Jackson explained the ‘child-like’ animosity between Bryant and O’Neal on the Lakers


About the author
Arun Sharma

Arun Sharma

Jack of all sports, master of none. But still, better than master of one. Except NFL. And MLB. And Fencing.

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