Wednesday, May 25, 2022

2022 Oscars: Shaquille O’Neal, Stephen Curry win award for work on ‘The Queen of Basketball’

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Stephen Curry and Shaquille O’Neal can add another award to their respective trophy cases. On Sunday, Curry and O’Neal both won an Oscar as executive producers on the short subject documentary “The Queen of Basketball.”

“The Queen of Basketball” is about the life of Lusia Harris, who was the first woman to score a basket in Olympic women’s basketball history. Harris went on to become the first woman to be drafted by an NBA franchise when she was selected by the New Orleans Jazz in 1977.

In 1992, Harris became the first African American woman to be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. She helped lead Delta State University to three consecutive national championships in the 1970s and earned a silver medal for the United States in the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal.

Curry became very involved with the film and even wore sneakers earlier in March that had the phrase “Queen Lucy” on them to spread awareness. Harris died in January, before the documentary was released.

“If there is anyone out there who doubts that there is an audience for female athletes and questions whether their stories are valuable or entertaining or important, let this Academy Award be the answer,” Director Ben Proudfoot said in his acceptance speech on Sunday night.

Proudfoot also took the time to petition for the release of women’s basketball star Brittney Griner, who has been detained in Russia since mid-February after she was found to have had vape cartridges that allegedly had cannabis oil in them. 

“Bring Brittney Griner home,” Proudfoot proclaimed as he ended his speech.

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