- It was revealed on Shaquille O’Neal’s podcast Big Podcast with Shaq that Candace Parker will be the first woman to cover an NBA 2K video game.
- Shaq’s reaction to the announcement was comical as he acted like it was a dream come true for him as well.
- More NBA news here.
For the first time ever, a woman will grace the cover of an NBA 2K video game when Candace Parker appears on one of the covers of NBA 2K22 NBA 75th Anniversary Edition versions of the game.
The 25-year-old Parker’s appearance on the cover of NBA 2K22 will coincide with the 25th anniversary of the WNBA beginning play.
Extremely proud and humbled to be the first female cover athlete in the history of @NBA2K
I’m honored to work with a company that’s investing in women and betting on us to succeed. I’m hopeful there will be many more badass females to follow 💪🏽💪🏽 pic.twitter.com/WJan4YE7Qt
— Candace Parker (@Candace_Parker) July 14, 2021
Parker, currently a member of the Chicago Sky, could only laugh as Shaq responded with an open mouth, a clap, the removing of his glasses, then wiping away faux tears and crying like a proud papa.
“Get outta here, Shaq!” Parker responded with a laugh.
Related: Shaq Suggests The WNBA Should Lower The Rim Which Leads To Extremely Uncomfortable Exchange With Candace Parker
When asked what this honor means to her, Parker responded, “I think as a kid when you grow up, you grow up with SLAM covers all over your bedroom ceiling. As a hooper, you grow up wanting your own shoe, and you grow up wanting to be on a video game. So for this to happen, I mean, I just remember growing up playing with Shaq. Like, playing with my brothers against Shaq, and getting it down for him to do his hook.
“And, you know, as your days kind of get fewer in your career and you know that there’s more basketball behind you than in front of you, I think you really take these moments. And so, this means a lot.
“You know, I hope that I’m the first, but I’m not the last. I hope that there’s many more young women and young girls that look and say, like, “We can do this.”
Shaq's reaction to finding out that Candace is on the cover of @NBA2K 🤣
Full interview: https://t.co/9ubdcTYVCj pic.twitter.com/CHnZQGcaU0
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) July 14, 2021
Speaking to the Washington Post about the honor, Parker said, “I think it’s a benchmark of women’s basketball for sure. I think most importantly it speaks to visibility and how important it is and how important the WNBA is. Everyone is looking at it that it’s impacting little girls, but it’s also impacting little boys and young men and young women and men and women. I think our game is different than the NBA, now it’s embracing that fact. Now more than ever, fans want to follow the athlete. Through social media, through video games, it’s adding and benefitting the WNBA.”
Luka Doncic, Kevin Durant, Dirk Nowitzki and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar will all also be featured on covers of NBA 2K22 when it is released.
Huge honor to be on the cover of #NBA2K22. Thanks @NBA2K! pic.twitter.com/ptIhpVNUdN
— Luka Doncic (@luka7doncic) July 14, 2021
I have 2 big announcements to make: I’m headed to Milwaukee for Game 4 tonite & can’t wait to see all the fans for the win! If you’re lucky enough for me to hear u scream I’ll flip you a signed card. More of a wowzer…
“I’m so excited to be on the cover of #NBA2K22. Thx @NBA2K! pic.twitter.com/JC7MJta5UU
— Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (@kaj33) July 14, 2021
Honored to share @NBA2K's 75th anniversary cover with the greats 🙏🏾 @kaj33 @swish41 pic.twitter.com/oN8D91VBoj
— Kevin Durant (@KDTrey5) July 14, 2021
Not sure who these other guys are but huge honor to be on cover of #NBA2K22. Thank you @NBA2K pic.twitter.com/Aetu6HblLB
— Dirk Nowitzki (@swish41) July 14, 2021
Listen to Shaq and Candace Parker’s entire conversation on his podcast below…
Related: Things Get Awkward When WNBA Player Candace Parker Schools Shaq On ‘Inside The NBA’ About Modern Basketball Strategy