Rudy Gobert has become something of a polarizing figure for NBA fans. The two-time DPOY inked a new max contract this offseason that will keep him paired up with Donovan Mitchell in Utah, and his pay day re-sparked debates over just where he belongs in the NBA hierarchy of players given his new $205 million contract.
Given that his greatest impact is on the defensive end rather than on offense where he is more limited than some other star big men, particularly as a shooter, Gobert has many who consider him vastly overrated. As such, the discourse around Gobert can get heated and the French superstar hasn’t been shy about making his feelings on his worth very clear. You can count Shaquille O’Neal among those who are not huge fans of Gobert, which should come as little surprise given Shaq’s propensity on Inside the NBA to demand that big men dominate the game to the tune of 25 and 12 or whatever other arbitrary numbers he chooses to throw out there on any given night.
Over the weekend, Shaq posted to Instagram with a photoshop of him dunking on Gobert, asserting that he would’ve had “45 points, 16 rebounds, 10 missed free throws in three quarters” and fouled Gobert out if he’d played against the Jazz center. Gobert brushed that off in the comments with some laughing emojis and an “I guess we’ll never know” response, and then took to Twitter to further clarify that there is no beef between he and the Hall of Famer, as he’s just letting it all go.
There is no beef. If people wanna keep speaking negatively about me or keep discrediting what i do it’s on them and all that does is show who they are. I will always be happy for a brother beating the odds. And i’m gonna keep beating the odds. https://t.co/l241ZQ2Qk4
— Rudy Gobert (@rudygobert27) January 4, 2021
I doubt this is the last we hear from Shaq on the matter, as he’s always enjoyed taking shots at the current big men in the NBA and whenever this comes up on TNT, you can bet Charles Barkley will egg him on into pouring more fuel on the fire. In any case, Gobert doesn’t seem interested in a war of words with Shaq, which comes as a bit of a surprise but shows some growth from the Frenchman. It’s probably a wise move as there’s really no way of winning in this and best to simply ignore it and carry on.