Shaq and Candace Parker spar over whether the Knicks are ‘back’

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Shaq and Candace Parker don’t see eye-to-eye when it comes to the Knicks.

On Tuesday night, the “Inside the NBA” crew — made up of the Lakers legend Shaquille O’Neal, WNBA star Parker, Dwyane Wade and Adam Lefkoe — were discussing the Eastern Conference playoff race when thinks got chippy between O’Neal and Parker.


Despite the Knicks being on a seven-game winning streak, O’Neal argued that New York needs to clinch the No. 4 seed and get home-court advantage in the East — in order to meet his personal standards.

“If they get home-court advantage in the first round, I’ll say the Knicks are back,” O’Neal said, noting that in order to do so, All-Star Julius Randle needs to be “ballin’.”

Meanwhile, Parker felt as though O’Neal wasn’t giving the Knicks enough credit, and it showed.

“Candace is over there making faces. They were terrible last year,” O’Neal said, to which Parker hit back with: “Why do they have to be fourth, why can’t you just say it? … They’ve been terrible, you have to give them some props.”

O’Neal said, “They’re good, but they’re not back?” and Parker laughed while asking, “What’s the definition of ‘back’?”

O’Neal explained, “You don’t get the ‘back’ title until you get the first round in the playoffs … You’re supposed to be 5th, 6th, 7th or 8th [seed] with their talent, but to impress me, you have to get home-court advantage.”

After Wade, who gave the Knicks their flowers, bowed out of the discussion, Parker continued to argue her point.

“[The Knicks] are ahead of Boston, they’re ahead of Miami — give them credit, give Thibs [coach Tom Thibodeau] credit,” Parker said.

“I just needed the definition of ‘they’re back’ because honestly I think this is a great resume for going into offseason trying to get a free agent. I think they need one free agent to sign with them and then they’ll be back,” she said.

O’Neal added, “Home-court advantage in the first round — back.”

Lefkoe then pointed out Wade, who was minding his own business sipping on a drink out of his mug.


“Oh, I’m on the show now?” Wade joked after O’Neal asked his thoughts about whether or not the Knicks are back.

The crew ended the heated debate with a collective laugh.

Following the back and forth, O’Neal took to Instagram to share one of his usual “impression” videos, with Parker as his subject.

“I’m about to give you a Candace Parker impression. You know we fight every week, so every week she goes, ‘Shaq shut yo ass up!’,” he mouthed in the camera, laughing.

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