Shaquille O’Neal Sadly Shares He Won’t Watch 2020 Hall of Fame Ceremony Due to Kobe Bryant’s Death

Omar Guerrero
2 Min Read

A still heartbroken Shaquille O’Neal shared recently that he will not watch the upcoming 2020 Hall of Fame ceremony that will add Kobe Bryant to a list of basketball luminaries.

O’Neal, a former Los Angeles Lakers star, was deeply hurt upon learning of his former teammate’s untimely death on Jan. 26 of this year.

The big man was a guest on the “Sports Like a Boss with Holly McPeak & Anne Marie Anderson,” where he shared about his time playing with Bryant as a member of the Purple and Gold.

“We will always be connected, whether people think we like each other or not,” O’Neal said about Bryant. “It doesn’t matter. We will always be connected. We were the most competitive, most enigmatic, most controversial, most dominant one-two punch ever created. But, I won’t even watch the Hall of Fame ceremony this year. I don’t want to see pictures and video of him. I don’t. … I never thought something like this would ever happen.”

Though O’Neal and Bryant butted heads during their time together with the Lakers, the two superstars produced three titles in succession for the franchise from 2000 to 2002.

After a bitter falling out between the two, it took years before they patched up their differences.

Bryant had five championships during his illustrious career. O’Neal, on the other hand, had four titles before he retired. They shared a special moment at the All-Star Game when they were named co-MVPs in 2009.

During Bryant’s memorial last February, O’Neal gave an emotional speech sprinkled with his typical humor, giving fans one of the event’s most memorable moments.

Bryant will be inducted into the Hall of Fame later this year along with basketball greats Kevin Garnett, Tim Duncan and others.

The 2020 Hall of Fame ceremony will take place on Aug. 29, in Springfield, Massachusetts.

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Omar is a former writer for King James Gospel. The very first team he rooted for was the Showtime Lakers and his favorite player back then was James Worthy. Seeing the Purple and Gold win back-to-back championships in the '80s made him a basketball junkie for life. He has witnessed and celebrated every Lakers championship since then and is now looking forward to a new era of basketball in Tinseltown led by LeBron James.