The New Orleans Saints reportedly held a 100-minute meeting via teleconference last week that featured an emotional apology from Drew Brees and basketball Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal urging the team not to divide from within moving forward.
O’Neal gave the team perfect advice when he used his relationship with Kobe Bryant.
“They’re going to try to divide you, just like they divided us with the Lakers! Me and Kobe [Bryant], we had a great thing going, but the media divided our team. We could have won five more championships! Stay strong. Don’t let the media divide you! Don’t let social media divide you!”
He discussed meeting with the Saints on NBA on TNT:
The Lakers won three straight championships from 1999-00 to 2001-02 but would ultimately trade Shaq to the Miami Heat prior to the 2004-05 season after his relationship with Bryant was the focus of plenty of headlines and speculation.
Brees initially said he disagreed with kneeling during the national anthem, saying to Yahoo Finance on Wednesday: “I will never agree with anybody disrespecting the flag of the United States of America.” He went on to say his grandfathers fought in World War II:
“So every time I stand with my hand over my heart, looking at that flag and singing the national anthem, that’s what I think about… thinking about all that has been sacrificed, not just those in the military, but for that matter, those throughout the civil rights movement of the 60s.
“And all that has been endured by so many people. And is everything right with our country right now? No, it’s not. We still have a long way to go. But I think what you do by standing there and showing respect to the flag with your hand over your heart is it shows unity. It shows that we are all in this together, we can all do better, and we are all part of the solution.”
He’s apologized several times since then.
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