Shaq sparks concern with hospital photo

Shaquille O’Neal, the analyst for “NBA on TNT,” caused worry among his supporters when he posted a picture of himself in a medical bed on Twitter Sunday evening.

The Post’s Andrew Marchand confirmed Monday that Shaq underwent a hip replacement surgery during the weekend.

Ernie Johnson and Candace Parker, O’Neal’s colleagues on TNT, received a communication from him regarding his apparent time spent in the hospital, but he did not disclose any specifics.

“I’m constantly observing @TurnerSportsEJ and @Candace_Parker, I miss all of you,” O’Neal expressed.

Parker – who inked a contract with the Las Vegas Aces in February – reposted the photograph and wrote: “Adore ya massive Fella.”

By Monday morning, Johnson had not made a public response.

Shaquille O
Shaquille O’Neal shared a photo of himself in a hospital bed on Sunday, March 19, 2023.
Shaquille O’Neal/Twitter

Former NBA center, Roy Hibbert inquired, “Are you alright, big guy?”

Some Twitter users followed suit with inquiries about O’Neal’s well-being, while numerous others expressed good wishes and encouraging messages.

As of Monday, the viral image has garnered more than 6.5 million views and 34,000 likes.

(L-R) Shaquille O
(L-R) Shaquille O’Neal, Kenny Smith and Charles Barkley commentate during the NBA All-Star Game on Feb. 19, 2023 at Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah.
NBAE via Getty Images

Earlier this month, O’Neal was seated near the court at T-Mobile Center, watching the Big 12 basketball tournament championship game featuring the Texas Longhorns and Kansas Jayhawks.

During the game, at the scoring table, the cheerful duo was captured on camera exchanging greetings, as the NBA icon shared a special moment with seasoned commentator Dick Vitale.

Sportscaster Dick Vitale talks with former NBA star Shaquille O
Dick Vitale talks with Shaquille O’Neal at the Big 12 Tournament Championship game between Texas and Kansas at T-Mobile Center on March 11, 2023 in Kansas City, Missouri.
Getty Images

O’Neal, who turned 51 last month, celebrated with a “Sneaker Ball” birthday bash at The Bank in Atlanta, Ga. On March 10.

“The exception to the dress code for his party was “fly kicks”, which included a black-tie and red carpet. The four-time NBA champion rocked a diamond chains and a rose-printed suit jacket.”

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Shaquille O’Neal attends his 51st Birthday Celebration at The Bank on March 10, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia.
WireImage

Charles Barkley, the co-host of “NBA on TNT” alongside O’Neal, played a crucial part in motivating him to lose weight, highlighting his impressive transformation of shedding pounds in the previous year.

During an appearance on Logan Paul’s “Impaulsive” podcast, O’Neal expressed, “I enjoy generating unconventional inspiration. Charles Barkley, who had a physique that resembled retirement, served as a reflection for me.”

I no longer wanted the belt to be over my stomach. I felt like I was just slimming down and moving forward. Now that the [picture] has gone viral, I’ve gained popularity.

O’Neal was mentioning a now-popular video clip he posted on Instagram that showcased his abdominal muscles.

O’Neal expressed his desire to become a symbol of sexual attractiveness, mentioning his interest in featuring in an underwear advertisement alongside his sons for Fruit of the Loom. He emphasized his aspiration to have well-developed muscles throughout his body and to return to a weight of 345 pounds, currently weighing 365 pounds after previously being at 401 pounds.

Following a medical appointment that diagnosed him with sleep apnea, the legendary basketball player expressed that he started prioritizing his well-being.

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