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Kobe and Shaq prove they aren’t beefing by teaming up to roast Dwight Howard

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It appeared like Kobe Bryant had actually annoyed Shaquille O’Neal by criticizing the work ethic he showed while with the Lakers, but the two were able to find common ground once again in their dislike of Dwight Howard.

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Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

One could be forgiven for thinking that they were accidentally transported back to 2003 over the last 24 hours, because it looked like former Lakers stars Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal might be feuding once again.

It all started innocently enough, with Bryant joking that he would have had “12 f---ing rings” if Shaq had gotten his “lazy ass” in shape. Bryant clearly made the remarks in jest, but given that text removes most of that context, it was perhaps unsurprising that O’Neal seemed to initially take offense when he commented on Bryant’s quotes on Instagram:

But it seems that Shaq was just giving Kobe some friendly ribbing back, something Kobe cleared up on Twitter the next morning:

(Editor’s Note: “MDE” stands for “most dominant ever” in Bryant lexicon, something he has previously called Shaq)

Well, maybe they’re too old to beef with each other, but it would seem that doesn’t necessarily extend to other feuds. Because if there is one thing the two Hall of Famers can agree on, it’s that they don’t like former and now-current Laker Dwight Howard.

Bryant and Howard of course memorably feuded both as teammates and afterwards, while O’Neal’s distaste for Howard dates back to the latter using the same “Superman” nickname O’Neal used while with the Magic.

On Wednesday, Bryant and O’Neal’s mutual dislike of Howard helped them unite in a way almost no other person has ever been able to get them to:

Would you look at that: Howard is already changing his reputation as someone who divides locker rooms just like he said he would, as he is clearly bringing these two former Lakers together. Now all he has to do is manage the same peacemaker effect in the current Lakers locker room and his signing may yet work out just fine for the organization. Even if it’s pretty clear that Bryant and O’Neal don’t think very highly of the move, or Howard himself.

For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. You can follow Harrison on Twitter at @hmfaigen.