One of the big stories in the NBA the past week has been the Shaq slander about Donovan Mitchell of the Utah Jazz. For those who aren’t up on this story, our guy Reags blogged it a few days ago.
As you can imagine, this did not go over well with Jazz fans, especially Jazz fans who are politicians. I’m talking about Utah legislator Kera Birkeland and House Speaker Brad Wilson.
According to the Salt Lake City Tribune, Representative Birkeland:
Introduced a resolution Tuesday that seeks to “recognize the exemplary service of Donovan Mitchell to the Utah Jazz” and also “suggests consideration of making the ‘Spida’ the official state arachnid.”
H.R. 3, entitled “House Resolution Honoring Donovan Mitchell over Shaquille O’Neal,” references O’Neal’s free-throw shooting percentage, the Rotten Tomatoes rating of the movie “Kazaam,” two Jazz series victories over the Lakers in 1997 and 1998, and the Shaq Fu video game.
“I think it is appropriate for the great state of Utah to award Shaquille O’Neal with a technical foul,” said Birkeland, wearing a referee shirt as she spoke the House floor.
Whole lot to unpack here. Read the bill itself here (it’s well worth it):
A story like this does not come around very often, so I had to get to the bottom of it. My interview with Representative Birkeland is below.
An extended version of the interview, along with a lot of other tomfoolery centering around the league, is in the latest episode of This League, available on all platforms.