Shaquille O’Neal prediction from 2017 re-emerges on the eve of Kobe Bryant statue unveiling

Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant are two of the greatest players to ever grace a basketball court. The double act dominated the early parts of the century with a threepeat to their name for the Lakers.

Shaq was honored by the Lakers in 2017 for his achievements with the LA franchise in the presence of Kobe Bryant. The 7-footer did not forget to thank Black Mamba and made a prediction which, now years later, is glorious and heartbreaking at the same time.

Shaq’s 2017 Kobe Bryant prediction on the verge of fulfilment

In 2017, the Lakers showered respect to their legend Shaquille O’Neal by installing his statue. In his speech at the occasion, Shaq mentioned Kobe and said, “Next time we’re out here for a statue, it’ll probably be your statue.”

His prophecy is finally on the verge of reality as Kobe Bryant’s statue is going to be unveiled at Star Plaza outside of Arena on February 8, 2024. But only Kobe will not be there.

The team will be playing against the Nuggets wearing the Black Mamba jerseys, designed in part by the late LA Lakers legend himself.

After the unveiling of Bryant’s statue, Kobe will join the legendary figures of Elgin Baylor, Shaquille O’Neal, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Jerry West and Chick Hearn who have a statue in their honor. Kobe Bryant, who once silenced his teammates in the NBA Finals, will forever live on with the soon to be unveiled statue.

Shaq and Kobe recalled their first fight

Former teammates Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal are one of the most iconic duos in NBA history. But things were not always smooth between the two Lakers greats. In 2018, Kobe revealed a story that involved a fight with the center.

It was in “Players Only” on NBA TV where the 5-times Championship winner disclosed the incident.

“It was lockout season, South West College, we were playing a pickup game. We’re on opposite teams and trash-talking. And you [Shaq] kept saying, ‘Yeah, take that, lil btch, take that, lil btch.’ I’m looking around like, ‘F*ker’s talking to me!’ And I said, ‘Hold on, there ain’t gonna be too many more of those.'”

“Next thing I knew, I saw a big hand coming this way, and I remember going this way. And I remember throwing some lollipop sht, Olden Polynice came and caught, and then they all just kinda broke us apart, broke us up.” Kobe narrated.

Despite their early fights, it did not affect their relationship as they went on to win 3 back-to-back championships from 2000 to 2002. The duo got split up in 2004 when Shaq was traded to the Miami Heat.

SZ Desk

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