Shaq Didn’t Like Zion Williamson Saying He’ll Do The Dunk Contest If He’s An All-Star SuperNayr

Zion Williamson turned heads earlier on Tuesday night after the New Orleans Pelicans blew out the Toronto Raptors. During his postgame press conference, Williamson promised that he would participate in a future Dunk Contest if he’s selected to participate in the All-Star Game — he’s made it twice in his career, although in 2023, he had to miss out on playing due to injury.

It would certainly give the NBA the sort of big name it covets for the Dunk Contest, but Shaquille O’Neal wasn’t a big fan of how Williamson went about doing this. During TNT’s postgame show, Shaq expressed his disappointment that Williamson said “if I make the All-Star team” instead of going with something more emphatic.

“You have to see it, Zion,” Shaq said. “When I make the All-Star team, yes. All that if talk, it’s just telling me that you’re not fully confident in yourself. Which is ok, he’s still a young player. But at some point, you have to say — like I said in Vegas — ‘this is my league.’”

Shaq is referring to the clip of him and Charles Barkley really tearing into Williamson after the Pelicans lost to the Los Angeles Lakers in the semifinal of the In-Season Tournament. While it’s unclear if he took all of that to heart, if there is a silver lining for Williamson, he has played pretty well as the Pelicans sit above the Play-In line in the Western Conference.

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