Retired NBA legend Shaquille O'Neal has been named Reebok's first president of basketball, the company announced Thursday.
The company also announced that former NBA great Allen Iverson would be joining O'Neal's efforts as the brand's vice president of basketball.
The newly created position is part of Reebok's attempt to reenter professional performance basketball, the company said.
"We are thrilled to be expanding upon our partnership with Shaquille with this historic appointment," said Reebok CEO Todd Krinsky. "With the combination of his deep-rooted history with Reebok and reigning influence he's made on the game, there is no one better than this guy to take the helm and lead our brand back to reclaiming its rightful place and dominance in basketball."
O'Neal has been a Reebok partner for decades — he signed with the shoe brand ahead of his rookie season back in 1992, which, at the time, was the company's biggest endorsement deal ever, the statement read.
In his new position, the hall-of-famer will lead Reebok's basketball strategy and "cultivate partnerships" with teams and athletes to help the brand pick up new relevance and dominance in the professional sport, as well as new brand deals with current players, the news release explained.
In response to the announcement O'Neal simply said in a statement, "We're back, baby! Get ready." It's unclear how involved O'Neal, who is also a full-time host on TNT's "Inside the NBA," will be in the new role.
Iverson has also been a longtime partner of the shoe company, and in his new role, is expected to "drive player recruitment, grassroots and community-based initiatives, and athlete activations like the Iverson Classic."
O'Neal, considered one of the most dominant centers in NBA history, played 19 years in the league, winning four titles, three with the Los Angeles Lakers and one with the Miami Heat. He was named the league's most valuable player in 2000.
Iverson, one of the most revolutionary scoring guards to play the game, spent the majority of his 14-year career with the Philadelphia 76ers, leading them to one NBA Finals appearance, which they lost to O'Neal's Lakers in 2001, the same season he was named NBA MVP.
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