Shaquille O’Neal and Allen Iverson will forever be linked. They faced off against each other in the 2001 NBA Finals (the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Philadelphia 76ers 4-1). Both of the generational talents were inducted into the 2016 Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame class. Now, the two have yet another thing in common.
This week (October 11), Reebok announced that Shaq is the new President of Basketball and Allen Iverson will serve s his Vice President. It’s indeed a full-circle moment for both athletes. The Diesel was Reebok’s very first signature athlete and his ‘Shaq Attaq’ kicks were the company’s first signature shoe. AI was also a Reebok athlete in the early 2000s. The popularity of the Hampton, Virginia native catapulted Reebok to heights that it hadn’t seen since Shaq was on the roster.
“AI is a founding father of Reebok Basketball and has left a lasting impact on the game and its surrounding culture,” said Shaq via Boardroom. “There is no one I’d rather work with to bring in a new generation of ballers to Reebok than him. Shaq and AI back at it — feels good.”
Todd Krinsky was named Reebok CEO in 2022 after the company was sold to Authentic Brands Group. The man who has held numerous leadership roles within the company (including working in the mailroom at one point) was tasked with breathing new life into the Reebok brand. Krinsky wanted to bring in two of Reebok’s most signature athletes to help make it happen.
“We started to talk about creating a strong role for Shaq to really be influential. It wasn’t going to just be a consulting role,” Krinsky said. “We wanted him to be in the fire with us and making strategic decisions. We felt like, ‘Let’s have Shaquille run this business with us.’”
Shaq and AI won’t be figureheads at all. They both will play to their strengths to focus on recruiting players. The Answer will do so by concentrating on Reebok’s involvement in grassroots organizations and community initiatives. The Big Aristotle will use his contacts to connect, recruit and retain the athletes. Considering the fact that Reebok is trying to reestablish its presence in the sports world, hiring these two superstars is a start in the right direction. If there are two people who know how to make waves, it’s these two.
“We just want to do things differently,” O’Neal told Boardroom. “That’s what we were best known for back then and what we want to stay true to now.”
CONGRATS TO SHAQ AND ALLEN IVERSON!
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