Odell Beckham Jr. just became the highest paid wideout in NFL history.
But the recognizable fame that has come with the Giants wide receiver’s impressive career takes a toll on even the toughest players.
In the first episode of LeBron James’ new HBO series, “The Shop,” Beckham said at times he feels like a caged animal.
“To me, I be feeling like, I tell people this all the time, I really feel like a zoo animal,” he said. “Like that’s where life’s gone for me. You know, you used to take your kids to the zoo and we used to be like, you know, I want to see the lions or let’s go see the lions. And you go out there, and the lions are laid out. You know what I mean? And it’s like, why aren’t they doing lion stuff, you know what I mean?
“Like I’ve got people who call out, Odell! Dance! Like, I’m a show punk, a show monkey or something. Like I’m a puppet, you know what I mean? And it’s like to me, that doesn’t feel good, but it’s like, damn, that’s what life became. But, can you ever really detach from that?”
This conversation, among many others shared inside a barbershop, centered around James.
“When you’re growing up in sports or hip-hop, whatever the case may be, all you hear is like, I want to be the best,” James said. “Whoever’s the best, they do it their way, whatever the case may be. And then, when you do it your way, and you win, it still ain’t enough.
“It still ain’t enough. And, and, and that’s for us as African Americans because I believe if the greatest quarterback in the world, he’s a white quarterback, if it’s Brady, if it’s Rodgers, if it’s Manning. And we’re doing the same s—, the same exact s—, I’m talking about the phone is on. We’re like, ‘Yo, get that f—ing phone out of my face. I’m with my family.’ If we’re out with our family, and we say that s—, and somebody posts it, and if Aaron Rodgers or one of those guys say that s—, and they post it, somebody’s going to be like, ‘Hey you guys should respect Aaron Rodgers.’
“They’re going to say to us, ‘Oh, you guys are d—heads.’”
Bron makes a good point about the double standard pic.twitter.com/9ESWb2du8n
— Jasmine (@JasmineLWatkins) August 29, 2018
Beckham wasn’t the only big name in the shop. Eagles defensive end Michael Bennett, Sparks center Candace Parker, rapper Snoop Dogg and comedian Jon Stewart were among others who joined in discussing many topics, including use of the N-word and creating your legacy.
Great perspectives on the word “nigga” on #TheShopHBO pic.twitter.com/JXaDjeqQmT
— Rev. Eric Dunn (@ericvdunn) August 29, 2018
Draymond on LeBron being the best player #TheShop pic.twitter.com/WkhZncVwa1
— BATTLES NBA™ (@BattlesNBA) August 29, 2018