Put simply, Friday's Morning Mashup is loaded. We have an old-school picture of a young Rob Gronkowski doing Rob Gronkowski things, details of MLB selling "historical" dirt (literally), a hilarious parody video of the new Internet Explorer ad, trivia, and much more, including insight into the brewing feud between Shaquille O'Neal and Dwight Howard.
O'Neal is an analyst for TNT. He is paid to be critical and (supposedly) objective in his assessments. It has been clear over the years, however, that Shaq has issues with Dwight Howard. Is it because of something as petty as the "Superman" nickname they share? Who knows?
Shaq recently said Andrew Bynum and Brook Lopez were better than Howard, which means one of two things: 1) Shaq is a terrible analyst (possible ... check that, likely); 2) Shaq is trollin' Howard to protect his legacy (bingo).
Howard, to his credit, stood up for himself in this diatribe against The Diesel.
Via The Los Angeles Times:
"I don't care what Shaq says," Howard said flatly after Lakers practice. "Shaq played the game and he is done. It's time to move on. He hated the fact when he played that older guys were talking about him and how he played. Now he's doing the exact same thing. Just let it go. There's no sense for him to be talking trash to me. He did his thing in the league. Sit back and relax. Your time is up."
It might be just a bit awkward when O'Neal gets his No. 34 Lakers jersey retired at halftime of an April 2 game at Staples Center. Howard said he would not try to patch anything up with O'Neal before then.
"What do we need to be on the same page for?" Howard said. "I have respect for him and what he did for basketball. That's it. When my time is up, there's going to be somebody else who can do everything I can do and probably do it better. Instead of me talking about him, I'll do my job to try to help him get to where I'm at. I think that's what guys who have done it before us should do."
For more on these stories, check out the Morning Mashup at the Out of Bounds  blog.