Golden State Warriors star Kevin Durant took aim at Shaquille O'Neal over the NBA great's public criticism of JaVale McGee.
McGee, 29, has been targeted by four-time NBA champion O'Neal for some of his performances in the league, with the Hall of Famer constantly ridiculing the Warriors centre.
Fed up with the scrutiny and humour after featuring in a parody video with O'Neal, former Dallas Mavericks, Philadelphia 76ers, Denver Nuggets and Washington Wizards big man McGee lashed out on Twitter as the pair traded insults and threats via social media on Thursday.
Durant leapt to the defence of his Warriors team-mate amid the spat, while hitting out at the Los Angeles Lakers icon.
"I understand Shaq works for a company that wants him to do that type of stuff, make fun of the players," Durant told reporters on Friday.
"It's cool and funny, but when you just keep doing it time and time and time again for no reason — and then the guy actually disagrees with you and you threaten him? I didn't know cops could threaten civilians like that.
"It's definitely childish. If I was JaVale, I'd feel the same way."
"Shaq was a s***** free-throw shooter," Durant added. "He missed dunks. He air-balled free-throws. He couldn't shoot outside the paint.
"He's bigger than everybody, he didn't have no skill. But he was bigger and stronger than everybody else.
"He's still a great player, but you had your flaws, too, as a player. And he played on five or six teams, too. So it's not like he was this perfect centre. You had your flaws, too."