Dwight Howard Tells Shaquille O'Neal to 'Stop Hating' on Him Playing in Taiwan

Adam WellsNovember 25, 2022

DENVER, CO - APRIL 10: Dwight Howard #39 of the Los Angeles Lakers celebrates their victory over the Denver Nuggets at Ball Arena on April 10, 2022 in Denver, Colorado. 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 Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images)
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Former NBA All-Star Dwight Howard has fired back at Shaquille O'Neal for his criticism of Howard for playing basketball in Taiwan.

On Thursday's episode of The Big Podcast (h/t Daniela Perez of SI.com), O'Neal didn't want to give Howard credit for his dominant play for the Taoyuan Leopards.

"You should never be complimented for being a good father because that’s what you’re supposed to do, right?" O’Neal said. "He's supposed to have 30 points playing against dudes 5'8"."

Howard went on Instagram Live after seeing the comments and told O'Neal to "stop hating":

"I have never in my life came at you about your basketball career, your family, your kids or anything of the sort. Because there's no need to. The world is too big to hate on another man. … Have I joked about, I've mimicked your voice, have I mimicked what I see on TV? Everybody do that. Comedians do that. People do that all the time. And I do it all the time, I do that to everybody. But I do not hate on people."

After going unsigned by NBA teams during free agency, Howard joined the Leopards in the T1 League on Nov. 7.

"I can't wait to see the fans, eat the food and have the best time ever and bring a championship to Taoyuan City," Howard said in a video posted on the Leopards' Facebook page.

In his season debut Nov. 19, Howard put up 38 points, 25 rebounds, nine assists and four blocks in a 120-115 victory over New Taipei CTBC DEA. The 36-year-old attempted nearly as many threes in the game (10) as he did during the entire 2021-22 season with the Los Angeles Lakers (15).

Dan Wolken @DanWolken

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O'Neal's criticism of Howard isn't a surprise, as the two have a longstanding feud. He didn't like that Howard adopted the Superman moniker, even donning a red cape when he won the 2008 Slam Dunk Contest, because that's what O'Neal called himself during his playing days.

After Howard won an NBA title with the Lakers in 2020, O'Neal took a shot at his rival by calling him a "front-runner" and "bandwagon jumper."

While it seems like Howard has moved on from this feud, O'Neal seems more than happy to keep the war of words going in perpetuity.