NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal recently had some wise words for the New Orleans Saints.
According to a Monday report from ESPN, the former Lakers superstar addressed the team Thursday and said, “Stay strong. Don’t let the media divide you! Don’t let social media divide you!” (RELATED: David Hookstead Is The True King In The North When It Comes To College Football)
The comments to the team come after quarterback Drew Brees said he found it to be disrespectful to stand for the anthem.
Highlight: @readdanwrite asks @drewbrees what the star NFL quarterback thinks about “players kneeling again when the NFL season starts.”@drewbrees: “I will never agree with anybody disrespecting the flag of the United States of America or our country.”
Full exchange: pic.twitter.com/MpCkFyOMed
— Yahoo Finance (@YahooFinance) June 3, 2020
The backlash was unlike anything I’ve seen before, and he issued two apologies in the aftermath of the situation.
View this post on Instagram
I would like to apologize to my friends, teammates, the City of New Orleans, the black community, NFL community and anyone I hurt with my comments yesterday. In speaking with some of you, it breaks my heart to know the pain I have caused. In an attempt to talk about respect, unity, and solidarity centered around the American flag and the national anthem, I made comments that were insensitive and completely missed the mark on the issues we are facing right now as a country. They lacked awareness and any type of compassion or empathy. Instead, those words have become divisive and hurtful and have misled people into believing that somehow I am an enemy. This could not be further from the truth, and is not an accurate reflection of my heart or my character. This is where I stand: I stand with the black community in the fight against systemic racial injustice and police brutality and support the creation of real policy change that will make a difference. I condemn the years of oppression that have taken place throughout our black communities and still exists today. I acknowledge that we as Americans, including myself, have not done enough to fight for that equality or to truly understand the struggles and plight of the black community. I recognize that I am part of the solution and can be a leader for the black community in this movement. I will never know what it’s like to be a black man or raise black children in America but I will work every day to put myself in those shoes and fight for what is right. I have ALWAYS been an ally, never an enemy. I am sick about the way my comments were perceived yesterday, but I take full responsibility and accountability. I recognize that I should do less talking and more listening…and when the black community is talking about their pain, we all need to listen. For that, I am very sorry and I ask your forgiveness.
Shaq’s advice is 100% correct. The media has been hammering Drew Brees nonstop for the better part of a week at this point, and for what good reason?
The man just said he didn’t agree with kneeling during the national anthem, which is a viewpoint and opinion shared by millions of Americans.
Yet the mob had to attack! They just had to attack!
You think the people on TV give a damn about Drew Brees and his relationship with his teammates? Not a chance in hell.
They just want to milk this situation for everything it’s worth. They will tear that team apart in a heartbeat if they think it benefits them and gets ratings and headlines.
The Saints need to close ranks and deal with any issues they might have internally. The media isn’t their friend at all.
Look at what they did to Brees! They pummeled him into submission without hesitation. Tony Dungy was one of the few men who stepped forward and told people to chill the hell out.
“@drewbrees can’t be afraid to say that and we can’t be afraid to say ‘ok I don’t agree with you but let’s talk about this’
We can’t just say anytime something happens we don’t agree with ‘Hey I’m done with that and this person’ that doesn’t make sense”
— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) June 4, 2020
Don’t let the media destroy the Saints! It’s just not worth it to give in.