Shaquille O'Neal
Professional basketball player
Shaquille O'Neal
Shaquille Rashaun O'Neal, nicknamed "Shaq", is an American retired basketball player and current analyst on the television program Inside the NBA. Standing 7 ft 1 in tall and weighing 325 pounds (147 kg), he was one of the heaviest players ever to play in the NBA. Throughout his 19-year career, O'Neal used his size and strength to overpower opponents for points and rebounds.
Shaquille O'Neal's personal information overview.
News abour Shaquille O'Neal from around the web
Karl-Anthony Towns Carves His Own Path As The Humble Superstar
Huffington Post - 5 days
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Huffington Post article
LA Lakers Purge Front Office As The Magic Johnson Era Commences
Huffington Post - 7 days
function onPlayerReadyVidible(e){'undefined'!=typeof HPTrack&&HPTrack.Vid.Vidible_track(e)}!function(e,i){if(e.vdb_Player){if('object'==typeof commercial_video){var a='',o='m.fwsitesection='+commercial_video.site_and_category;if(a+=o,commercial_video['package']){var c='&m.fwkeyvalues=sponsorship%3D'+commercial_video['package'];a+=c}e.setAttribute('vdb_params',a)}i(e.vdb_Player)}else{var t=arguments.callee;setTimeout(function(){t(e,i)},0)}}(document.getElementById('vidible_1'),onPlayerReadyVidible); The Los Angeles Lakers announced Tuesday that they have purged their front office in a shake-up that will leave former Laker great Earvin “Magic” Johnson in charge of turning the once-great franchise around following the worst half-decade of basketball in its lauded history.  In a release, the team said it has put Johnson “in charge of all basketball operations” and fired general manager Mitch Kupchak, who had overseen the team’s day-to-day basketball deci ...
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Huffington Post article
Charles Barkley Will Never Be An 'Idiot On Twitter' Like Donald Trump
Yahoo News - about 1 month
If it’s not obvious by now, Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal had a blast on Monday’s edition of Inside the NBA. After they presumably enraged women everywhere by discussing the “skeezers” of New Orleans and Miami, they shared a big laugh over one of Barkley’s latest political jokes. In setting up his delightfully-jingled “E.J.’s Neat-O Stat of the Night” segment, Ernie Johnson asked the Round Mound of Avoiding Social Media what it would take for him to finally get on Twitter.
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Yahoo News article
How Mexico's Horacio Llamas made history during eventful NBA career
ABC News - about 2 months
His NBA "career" consisted of 28 regular-season games. He played a grand total of 143 minutes. But? Horacio Llamas,?the first Mexican-born player to appear in an NBA game, did more than just become the answer to an obscure trivia question. The 6-foot-11 center experienced moments and gained memories that most basketball players could only dream about. Llamas ran the floor with a teenage Kobe Bryant, made his first start against his idol, Hakeem Olajuwon, felt the strength and scowl of Charles Barkley, bodied up on a 25-year-old Shaquille O'Neal and sank a game-winning basket off a bullet pass from Michael Jordan. Sure, it was more gig than occupation, but Llamas made the most of his cup of coffee with the NBA. Nearly 20 years after making history by stepping on the floor as a member of the Phoenix Suns, the 43-year-old from El Rosario, Sinaloa, is excited that the NBA is returning to his home country this... ...
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ABC News article
Shareef O'Neal helps Crossroads hold off Brentwood, 54-50
LATimes - about 2 months
There were more than 900 fans packed into the sold-out gymnasium at Santa Monica Crossroads on Friday night for a rivalry basketball game against Brentwood. Sitting in the first row of the bleachers with his own portable stadium seat was Shaquille O’Neal, who stretched out his size 22 shoes to...
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LATimes article
Heat retire O'Neal's No. 32 NBA jersey
Yahoo News - 2 months
Shaquille O'Neal fulfilled a promise in 2006 to bring Miami its first NBA championship and the Heat said thank you by retiring his No. 32 jersey. The jersey was lifted to the rafters in an emotional but sometimes light-hearted halftime ceremony that included O'Neal's mother, Lucille, arriving on the court behind the wheel of a scaled-down 18-wheel truck. It was a miniature version -- right down to the words "Diesel Power" written on the side -- of the semi that O'Neal once drove into town when he made that initial promise back in 2004.
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Yahoo News article
The Staples Center Will Soon Bust Out A Huge Statue Of Shaquille O'Neal
Huffington Post - 2 months
A big man with a huge personality is getting a massive tribute. ​On Monday, The Los Angeles Lakers announced the Staples Center in Los Angeles will unveil a bronze statue of Shaquille O’Neal on March 24, 2017. OFFICIAL: A bronze statue of @SHAQ will be unveiled at @STAPLESCenter prior to the game on 3/24 - — Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) December 20, 2016 The 1,200 pound, nine-foot bronze statue of the NBA Hall of Fame member and former Los Angeles Laker will be suspended 10 feet above the ground the stadium’s Star Plaza, according to O’Neal spent eight seasons with the Lakers, helping them earn three NBA championships. O’Neal will join other sports legends such as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Wayne Gretzky, Chick Hearn, Oscar De La Hoya, Earvin “Magic” Johnson, and Jerry West, who also have statues at the stadium. -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be ...
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Huffington Post article
How Shaq moved a mountain to deliver one special gift
ABC News - 2 months
In the summer of 1996, Shaquille O'Neal left the Magic to sign a $120 million Lakers contract, and bought a house in the opulent hills overlooking Beverly Hills. A few months later he and his uncle Mike hopped in the car for a drive across L.A., to Watts. It's about an hour drive, but feels so far from the winding tree-lined hills of Mulholland Drive. Shaq had thoughtfully chosen a community center there to reprise his role as Shaq-a-Claus. He told uncle Mike it was his favorite day of the year, and it was full of taking holiday orders from delighted kids. One by one, they eagerly revealed their wishes: a bicycle, the top-selling Mario video game, a Tickle Me Elmo, the new Cabbage Patch dolls which were selling out as soon as they hit the shelves. He said yes to them all and promised Shaq-a-Claus would deliver the gifts two days before Christmas. Mission accomplished. Except ... as he turned to go, Shaq noticed one little boy who hadn't come forward. Concerned that. ...
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ABC News article
How Shaq moved a mountain to deliver one special gift
ABC News - 3 months
In the summer of 1996, Shaquille O'Neal left the Magic to sign a $120 million Lakers contract, and bought a house in the opulent hills overlooking Beverly Hills. A few months later he and his uncle Mike hopped in the car for a drive across L.A., to Watts. It's about an hour drive, but feels so far from the winding tree-lined hills of Mulholland Drive. Shaq had thoughtfully chosen a community center there to reprise his role as Shaq-a-Claus. He told uncle Mike it was his favorite day of the year, and it was full of taking holiday orders from delighted kids. One by one, they eagerly revealed their wishes: a bicycle, the top-selling Mario video game, a Tickle Me Elmo, the new Cabbage Patch dolls which were selling out as soon as they hit the shelves. He said yes to them all and promised Shaq-a-Claus would deliver the gifts two days before Christmas. Mission accomplished. Except ... as he turned to go, Shaq noticed one little boy who hadn't come forward. Concerned that. ...
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ABC News article
MLB takes big step forward in its support of LGBTQ youth
Yahoo News - 4 months
It’s something that, since its inception in 2010, has seen a wide range of supporters, from The White House to WWE to Shaquille O’Neal to NASCAR. MLB isn’t just one another Spirit Day’s corporate supporters — of which there are more than a dozen — this year it is one of GLAAD’s two official partners in Spirit Day. The other is Twitter.
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Yahoo News article
Muslims and the Making of America
Huffington Post - 5 months
In recent times of rising Islamophobia, rampant misinformation about Islam, and political rhetoric against Muslims, books showcasing the positive aspects of Muslims in America are very welcome. Hussain's book Muslims and the Making of America may be a very short read but it is a much needed one, packed with facts that destroy myths and remove stereotypes. Many writers have written similar topics, but Hussain has a unique angle. He showcases Muslims instead of Islam, and he focuses on people rather than religion. This is an important distinction, because our media, both print and broadcast, offers a plethora of often conflicting information about Islam. In an environment when many Americans ask, What have Muslims ever done for America? Hussain attempts to showcase a wide variety of Muslims in areas that the average American cares about: culture. This topic of course is much vaster than just one writer can or should attempt. One could point to Muslim American contributions to sc ...
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Huffington Post article
David Ortiz serves as undercover Lyft driver
ABC News - 5 months
It appears David Ortiz may have some work lined up for him once his storied career ends after this season. In a video released Wednesday, the Boston Red Sox slugger served as a Lyft driver in disguise, taking unsuspecting passengers around Boston while wearing a wig and sunglasses and calling himself Donny. He even did his routine of spitting into his hands before taking the wheel. Amusingly, Ortiz talked a lot of trash about New York while in the car, noting that, "A big part of my career has been being successful in New York." He also told one passenger: "I like to drive, but a lot of times they make me walk." Ortiz is just the latest in a line of athletes to take a turn behind the wheel in recent months, joining Shaquille O'Neal, Richard Sherman and Kris Bryant.
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ABC News article
The Shaq guide to Los Angeles
CNN - 5 months
"L.A. is about fun, having a good time and winning," says NBA basketball legend Shaquille O'Neal. "Everyone's happy. It's a beautiful town."
Article Link:
CNN article
Shaq: Ben Simmons is a 'LeBron-type player'
ABC News - 6 months
Last week, former NBA superstar Shaquille O'Neal was? inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. While speaking with the media, O'Neal was asked by CSN Philly about the 2016 rookie class and if any players stood out as future stars. "I don't know all of them, but I know my guy's going to be pretty good, [ Philadelphia 76ers rookie] Ben Simmons," O'Neal told CSN Philly. O'Neal said he's familiar with the No. 1 overall pick's game because he attended LSU, O'Neal's alma mater, and compared his unique skill set and potential on-court impact to that of arguably the best player in the world: Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James. "He's a LeBron-type player," O'Neal said of the 20-year-old forward. "What I mean by that, LeBron does a nice job of making everybody else around him better -- passing the ball, doing the small things -- and Ben is that type of player." .. ...
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ABC News article
Shaquille O’Neal Unofficially Auditions To Be Kanye West's Next Video Vixen
Huffington Post - 6 months
Shaquille O’Neal has moves on and off the basketball court.  The 44-year-old former NBA player showed off his hilarious dance moves in an Instagram video on Sunday. In the clip, O’Neal attempts to recreate Teyana Taylor’s steamy gaze and sexy choreography from Kanye West’s “Fade” music video.  Wearing a black tank top and red striped boxer shorts and blasting music from his phone, Shaq nails it in the homemade music video ― though at times the frame can’t quite capture all of the 7-foot-1 basketball star. “Feeling faded #remixchallenge can anyone beat this,” Shaq wrote in his Instagram caption.  Feeling faded #remixchallenge can anyone beat this A video posted by DR. SHAQUILLE O'NEAL Ed.D. (@shaq) on Sep 11, 2016 at 4:44pm PDT The rest of us were watching along like:  How close did Shaq come to nailing the original? Watch Teyana Taylor break it down ...
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Huffington Post article
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Shaquille O'Neal
  • 2016
    Age 43
    In April 2016, O'Neal participated in his first ever match, when he was a surprise celebrity entry in the André the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania 32.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal eliminated Damien Sandow, and had another confrontation with Big Show before being eliminated himself by most of the other wrestlers. O'Neal is also an active businessman and investor. He was an active bond investor in the early 1990s but continued to wade into stocks and made investments in various companies such as General Electric, Apple, and PepsiCo. He described what has worked best for him in stock investing was where he felt a personal connection with the company. He has also been an active real estate entrepreneur. O'Neal was looking to expand his business ventures with real-estate development projects aimed at assisting Orlando home owners facing foreclosure. His plans involved buying the mortgages of those who had fallen into foreclosure and then selling the homes back to them under more affordable terms. He would make a small profit in return, but wanted to make an investment in Orlando and help out homeowners.
    On February 26, 2016, Miami Heat announced that it will retire his No. 32 jersey during the 2016–17 season.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal called himself "The Big Aristotle" and "Hobo Master" for his composure and insights during interviews. Journalists and others gave O'Neal several nicknames including "Shaq", "The Diesel", "Shaq Fu", "The Big Daddy", "Superman", "The Big Agave", "The Big Cactus", "The Big Shaqtus", "The Big Galactus", "Wilt Chamberneezy", "The Big Baryshnikov", "The Real Deal", "The Big Shamrock", "The Big Leprechaun", "Shaqovic", and "The Big Conductor". Although he was a favorite interviewee of the press, O'Neal was sensitive and often went weeks without speaking. When he did not want to speak with the press, he employed an interview technique whereby, sitting in front of his cubicle, he would murmur in his low-pitched voice. During the 2000 Screen Actors Guild strike, O'Neal performed in a commercial for Disney. O'Neal was fined by the union for crossing the picket line.
    O'Neal was elected into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2016.
    More Details Hide Details In addition to his basketball career, O'Neal has released four rap albums, with his first, Shaq Diesel, going platinum. He has appeared in numerous films and has starred in his own reality shows, Shaq's Big Challenge and Shaq Vs.. He currently hosts The Big Podcast with Shaq.
  • 2015
    Age 42
    In 2015, Shareef was seen in high school basketball highlights as a or freshman, and had been described to have "polar opposite playing style to his father".
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    In September 2015 whilst promoting sportswear giant Reebok in South Korea, O'Neal joined the cast in the South Korean variety television show Off to School where he went to Seo Incheon High School.
    More Details Hide Details The show features various celebrities attending a selected high school as students for three days. The producer of the show, Kim No Eun said, "We’ve worked hard on our guest list this season, so Chu Sung Hoon will be appearing on a cable channel for the first time. Shaquille O'Neal will be on the show as well. We succeeded in casting him after a lot of effort. O'Neal will be visiting Korea for a promotion and will be visiting the school on the last day. He will have lunch with the students. We’re even preparing a big match between Chu Sung Hoon and Shaquille O'Neal. We’re specially preparing a uniform for Shaquille O'Neal."
    In June 2015, O'Neal invested in technology startup Loyale3 Holdings Inc., a San Francisco brokerage firm whose website and mobile app enables companies to sell a piece of their IPOs directly to small investors who put up as a little as $100 and also allows investors to regularly buy small amounts of shares in already public companies.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal is an investor for eSports team NRG Esports. He has also appeared in television commercials promoting the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive league ELeague. O'Neal was raised by a Baptist mother and a Muslim stepfather. Both Robin Wright in her book Rock the Casbah as well as the Los Angeles Times have identified O'Neal as a Muslim. However, O'Neal has said, "I'm Muslim, I'm Jewish, I'm Buddhist, I'm everybody 'cause I'm a people person."
  • 2013
    Age 40
    In September 2013, O'Neal became a minority owner of the Sacramento Kings.
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  • 2012
    Age 39
    In September 2012, O'Neal made a guest appearance on Total Nonstop Action Wrestling's Impact Wrestling program, where he had a backstage segment with Hulk Hogan.
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  • 2010
    Age 37
    In summer 2010, O'Neal began dating reality TV star Nikki "Hoopz" Alexander.
    More Details Hide Details The couple resided at O'Neal's home in Sudbury, Massachusetts. O'Neal is a 2009 inductee of the New Jersey Hall of Fame. O'Neal became a Freemason in 2011, becoming a member of Widow's Son Lodge No. 28 in Boston. O'Neal is a Freemason of the Prince Hall appendant body. In his mansion in Orlando, Florida, O'Neal built a home movie theater with two rows of five retractable chairs, Superman lights, a Superman symbol on the floor, a big screen, a Superman symbol on his blanket, and 5.1 surround sound. O'Neal also created an indoor basketball court.
    Shaquille O'Neal conducted the Boston Pops Orchestra at the Boston Symphony Hall on December 20, 2010.
    More Details Hide Details Starting with Blue Chips and Kazaam, O'Neal appeared in movies that were panned by some critics. O'Neal appeared as himself on an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm, bedridden after Larry David's character accidentally tripped him while stretching, and in two episodes each of My Wife and Kids and The Parkers. He appeared in cameo roles in the films, Freddy Got Fingered, Jack and Jill and Scary Movie 4. O'Neal appeared in the 311 music video for the hit single "You Wouldn't Believe" in 2001, in P. Diddy's video for "Bad Boys 4 Life", the video for Aaron Carter's "That's How I Beat Shaq", and the video for Owl City's "Vanilla Twilight". O'Neal appeared in the movie CB4 in a small "interviewing" scene. O'Neal played John Henry Irons/Steel in Steel based on the eponymous superhero. O'Neal appeared in a SportsCenter commercial dressed in his Miami police uniform, rescuing Mike the Tiger from a tree. O'Neal reportedly wanted a role in the film X2 (the second in the X-Men film series), but was ignored by the filmmakers. O'Neal appeared as Officer Fluzoo in the comedy sequel Grown Ups 2.
    O'Neal was the third-ranked player all-time in free throws taken, having attempted 11,252 free-throws in 1,207 games up to and including the 2010–11 season.
    More Details Hide Details On December 25, 2008, O'Neal missed his 5,000th free throw, becoming the second player in NBA history to do so, along with Chamberlain. O'Neal only made one three point shot during his entire career. He made the shot during the 1995–96 NBA season with the Orlando Magic. His career three point shot record is 1 for 22 (a 4.5% career percentage). On his own half of the hardwood, O'Neal was a capable defender, named three times to the All-NBA Second Defensive Team. His presence intimidated opposing players shooting near the basket, and he averaged 2.3 blocked shots per game over the course of his career. Phil Jackson believed O'Neal underachieved in his career, saying he "could and should have been the MVP player for 10 consecutive seasons." The Lakers retired his No. 34 jersey on April 2, 2013.
    Before 2010, he was the last active American player to have a gold from the FIBA World Championships.
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    On August 28, 2010 at UFC 118 in Boston, O'Neal reiterated his desire to fight Choi in an interview.
    More Details Hide Details A lifelong professional wrestling fan, O'Neal has made numerous appearances at televised events over the years for three different promotions.
    O'Neal was also an unlockable character in UFC Undisputed 2010.
    More Details Hide Details At CES 2014, O'Neal confirmed to GamerFitnation that there would be a "Shaq Fu 2" being released soon on next-generation consoles. O'Neal and his mother, Lucille Harrison, were featured in the documentary film Apple Pie, which aired on ESPN. O'Neal had a 2005 reality series on ESPN, Shaquille, and hosted a series called Shaq's Big Challenge on ABC. O'Neal appeared on NBA Ballers and NBA Ballers: Phenom, in the 2002 Discovery Channel special Motorcycle Mania 2 requesting an exceptionally large bike to fit his large size famed custom motorcycle builder Jesse James, in the first Idol Gives Back in 2007, on an episode of Fear Factor, and on an episode of MTV's Jackass, where he was lifted off the ground on Wee Man's back. O'Neal was a wrestling fan and made appearances at many WWE events. O'Neal was pranked on the MTV show Punk'd when a crew member accused him of stealing his parking space. After O'Neal and his wife went into a restaurant, Ashton Kutcher's crew members let the air out of O'Neal's tires. O'Neal and the crew member then got into an altercation and after Kutcher told O'Neal he had been Punk'd, O'Neal made an obscene gesture at the camera.
    He was introduced by the Celtics on August 10, 2010, and chose the number 36.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal said he didn't "compete with little guys who run around dominating the ball, throwing up 30 shots a night—like D–Wade, Kobe." O'Neal added that he was only competing against Duncan: "If Tim Duncan gets five rings, then that gives some writer the chance to say 'Duncan is the best,' and I can't have that." Publicly, he insisted he did not care whether he started or substituted for the Celtics, but expected to be part of the second unit. Privately, he wanted to start, but kept it to himself. O'Neal missed games throughout the season due to an assortment of ailments to his right leg including knee, calf, hip, and Achilles injuries. The Celtics traded away center Kendrick Perkins in February partially due to the expectation that O'Neal would return to fill Perkins' role. The Celtics were 33–10 in games Perkins had missed during the year due to injury, and they were 19–3 in games that O'Neal played over 20 minutes. After requesting a cortisone shot, O'Neal returned April 3 after missing 27 games due to his Achilles; he played only five minutes due to a strained right calf. It was the last regular season game he would play that year. O'Neal missed the first round of the 2011 playoffs. He insisted on more cortisone shots and returned in the second round, but he was limited to 12 minutes in two games as the Heat eliminated the Celtics from the playoffs.
    On August 4, 2010, the Celtics announced that they had signed O'Neal.
    More Details Hide Details The contract was for two years at the veteran minimum salary for a total contract value of $2.8 million. O'Neal wanted the larger mid-level exception contract, but the Celtics chose instead to give it to Jermaine O'Neal. The Atlanta Hawks and the Dallas Mavericks also expressed interest but had stalled on O'Neal's salary demands.
    He returned to the starting line-up in time for the 2010 NBA Playoffs.
    More Details Hide Details The Cavaliers swiftly defeated the Chicago Bulls in the first round, yet Cleveland became the first team in NBA history to miss the NBA Finals after laying claim to the NBA's top playoff seed for two consecutive seasons. On May 13, the Cavaliers were eliminated from the playoffs, losing to the Boston Celtics 4–2 in the Eastern Conference semifinals. Upon hearing Bryant comment that he had more rings than O'Neal, Wyc Grousbeck, principal owner of the Celtics, saw an opportunity to acquire O'Neal. Celtics coach Doc Rivers agreed to the signing on the condition that O'Neal would not receive preferential treatment nor could he cause any locker room problems like in Los Angeles or Miami.
    On Friday, February 25, 2010 O'Neal suffered a severe right thumb injury while attempting to go up for a shot against Glen Davis of the Boston Celtics.
    More Details Hide Details He had surgery on the thumb on March 1 and returned to play on April 17 in the first round playoff game against the Chicago Bulls. O'Neal averaged career lows in almost every major statistical category, taking on a much less significant role than in previous years. His presence in the post was not as significant as in years past. After the retirement of Lindsey Hunter on March 5, O'Neal became the NBA's oldest active player.
  • 2009
    Age 36
    On June 25, 2009, O'Neal was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers for Sasha Pavlovic, Ben Wallace, $500,000 and a 2010-second round draft pick.
    More Details Hide Details Upon arriving in Cleveland, O'Neal said, "My motto is very simple: Win a Ring for the King", referring to LeBron James. James was the leader of the team, and O'Neal deferred to him.
    The 2009 NBA Playoffs was also the first time since O'Neal's rookie season in 1992–93 that he did not participate in the playoffs.
    More Details Hide Details He was named as a member of the All-NBA Third Team. The Suns notified O'Neal he might be traded to cut costs.
    In a matchup against Orlando on March 3, 2009, O'Neal was outscored by Magic center Dwight Howard, 21–19. "I'm really too old to be trying to outscore 18-year-olds", O'Neal said, referring to the then 23-year-old Howard. "It's not really my role anymore."
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal was double-teamed most of the night. "I like to play people one-on-one. My whole career I had to play people one-on-one. Never once had to double or ask for a double. But it's cool", said O'Neal. During the game, O'Neal flopped against Howard. Magic coach Stan Van Gundy, who had coached O'Neal with the Heat, was "very disappointed cause O'Neal knows what it's like. Let's stand up and play like men, and I think our guy did that tonight." O'Neal responded, "Flopping is playing like that your whole career. I was trying to take the charge, trying to get a call. It probably was a flop, but flopping is the wrong use of words. Flopping would describe his coaching." Mark Madsen, a Lakers teammate of O'Neal's for three years, found it amusing since "everyone in the league tries to flop on Shaq and Shaq never flops back." In a 2006 interview in TIME, O'Neal said if he were NBA commissioner, he would "Make a guy have to beat a guy—not flop and get calls and be nice to the referees and kiss ass."
    On February 27, 2009, O'Neal scored 45 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, his 49th career 40-point game, beating the Toronto Raptors 133–113.
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    He returned to the All-Star Game in 2009 and emerged as co-MVP along with ex-teammate Kobe Bryant.
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  • 2008
    Age 35
    The 2008–09 season improved for O'Neal, who averaged 18 pts, 9 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks through the first half (41 games) of the season, leading the Suns to a 23–18 record and 2nd place in their division.
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    O'Neal made his Suns debut on February 20, 2008 against his former Lakers team, scoring 15 points and grabbing 9 rebounds in the process.
    More Details Hide Details The Lakers won, 130–124. O'Neal was upbeat in a post-game press conference, stating: "I will take the blame for this loss because I wasn't in tune with the guys But give me four or five days to really get in tune and I'll get it." In 28 regular-season games, O'Neal averaged 12.9 points and 10.6 rebounds, good enough to make the playoffs. One of the reasons for the trade was to limit Tim Duncan in the event of a postseason matchup between the Suns and the San Antonio Spurs, especially after the Suns' six-game elimination by the Spurs in the 2007 NBA Playoffs. O'Neal and the Phoenix Suns did face the Spurs in the first round of the playoffs, but they were once again eliminated, in five games. O'Neal averaged 15.2 points, 9.2 rebounds and 1. assists per game.
    The Phoenix Suns acquired O'Neal in February 2008 from the league-worst Miami Heat, who had a record at the time of the trade of 9-37, in exchange for Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks.
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  • 2007
    Age 34
    On September 4, 2007, O'Neal filed for divorce from Shaunie in a Miami-Dade Circuit court. Shaunie later said that the couple had gotten back together and that the divorce was withdrawn. However, on November 10, 2009, Shaunie filed an intent to divorce, citing irreconcilable differences.
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    O'Neal played 33 games for the Miami Heat in the 2007–08 season prior to being traded to the Phoenix Suns.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal started all 33 games and averaged 14.2 points per game. Following the trade to Phoenix, O'Neal averaged 12.9 ppg while starting all 28 games with the Suns.
    O'Neal experienced a rough start for the 2007–08 season, averaging career lows in points, rebounds and blocks.
    More Details Hide Details His role in the offense diminished, as he attempted only 10 field goals per game, versus his career average of 17. In addition, O'Neal was plagued by fouls, and during one stretch fouled out of five consecutive games. O'Neal's streak of 14 straight All-Star appearances ended that season. O'Neal again missed games due to injuries, and the Heat had a 15–game losing streak. According to O'Neal, Riley thought he was faking the injury. During a practice in February 2008, O'Neal got into an altercation with Riley over the coach ordering a tardy Jason Williams to leave practice. The two argued face-to-face, with O'Neal poking Riley in the chest and Riley slapping his finger away. Riley soon after decided to trade O'Neal. O'Neal said his relationship with Wade was not "all that good" by the time he left Miami, but he did not express disappointment at Wade for failing to stand up for him.
  • 2006
    Age 33
    In the 2006–07 season O'Neal reached 25,000 career points, becoming the 14th player in NBA history to accomplish that milestone.
    More Details Hide Details However, it was the first season in O'Neal's career that his scoring average dropped below 20 points per game.
    In the 2006 NBA Playoffs, the Heat first faced the younger Chicago Bulls, and O'Neal delivered a dominating 27 point, 16 rebound and 5 blocks performance in game 1 followed by a 22-point effort in game 2 to help Miami take a 2-0 lead in the series.
    More Details Hide Details Chicago would respond with two dominating performances at home to tie the series, but Miami would respond right back with a victory at home in game 5. Miami returned to Chicago and closed out the series in the 6th game, highlighted by another dominating performance by O'Neal who finished with 30 points and 20 rebounds. Miami advanced to face New Jersey, who won a surprising game 1 victory before the Heat won four straight to assure a rematch with Detroit. The Pistons had no answer for Wade throughout the series, while O'Neal delivered 21 points and 12 rebounds in game 3 followed by 27 points and 12 boards in game 4 to help Miami take a 3-2 series lead. The Pistons would win game 5 in Detroit, and Wade would once again get injured, but the Heat held on to win game 6 with O'Neal scoring 28 points with 16 rebounds and 5 blocks to help Miami reach their first ever NBA Finals.
  • 2005
    Age 32
    Upon his trade to Miami, O'Neal began training to become a Miami Beach reserve officer. On December 8, 2005, he was sworn in, but elected for a private ceremony to avoid distracting attention from the other officers.
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    O'Neal finished the 2005–06 season as the league leader in field goal percentage.
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    During the 2005–06 season, the Heat recorded only a .500 record without O'Neal in the line-up.
    More Details Hide Details On April 11, 2006, O'Neal recorded his second career triple-double against the Toronto Raptors with 15 points, 11 rebounds and a career high 10 assists.
    In the second game of the 2005–06 season, O'Neal injured his right ankle and subsequently missed the following 18 games.
    More Details Hide Details Upon O'Neal's return, Van Gundy resigned, citing family reasons, and Pat Riley assumed head coach responsibilities. Many critics stated that Heat coach Riley correctly managed O'Neal during the rest of the season, limiting his minutes to a career low. Riley felt doing so would allow O'Neal to be healthier and fresher come playoff time. Although O'Neal averaged career lows (or near-lows) in points, rebounds, and blocks, he said in an interview "Stats don't matter. I care about winning, not stats. If I score points and we win I'm happy. If I score 50, 60 points, break the records, and we lose, I'm pissed off. 'Cause I knew I did something wrong. I'll have a hell of a season if I win the championship and average 20 points a game."
    In August 2005, O'Neal signed a 5-year-extension with the Heat for $100 million.
    More Details Hide Details Supporters applauded O'Neal's willingness to take what amounted to a pay cut and the Heat's decision to secure O'Neal's services for the long term. They contended that O'Neal was worth more than $20 million per year, particularly given that lesser players earned almost the same amount.
    When Hall of Fame center George Mikan died in June 2005, O'Neal, who considered Mikan to be a major influence, extended an offer to his family to pay all of the funeral expenses, which they accepted.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal is a fan of the National Hockey League's New Jersey Devils, who play in his hometown of Newark, and has been seen at several games over the years. On January 11, 2014 O'Neal performed the ceremonial first puck and drove a Zamboni for a game between the Devils and the Florida Panthers. O'Neal is also a fan of English football club Northampton Town, and has posted videos of support to their official YouTube page. O'Neal endorsed Republican New Jersey governor Chris Christie in his 2013 reelection bid, appearing in a television advertisement.
  • 2004
    Age 31
    O'Neal also narrowly lost the 2004–05 MVP Award to Phoenix Suns guard Steve Nash in one of the closest votes in NBA history.
    More Details Hide Details Despite being hobbled by a deep thigh bruise, O'Neal led the Heat to the Eastern Conference Finals and a Game 7 against the defending champion Detroit Pistons, losing by a narrow margin. Afterwards, O'Neal and others criticized Heat head coach Stan Van Gundy for not calling enough plays for O'Neal.
    With O'Neal on board, the new-look Heat surpassed expectations, claiming the best record in the Eastern Conference in 2004–05 with 59 wins.
    More Details Hide Details He played in 73 games, his most since 2001 season, averaged 22.9 points a game along with 10.4 rebounds and 2.3 blocks. Shaq also made his 12th consecutive All-Star Team, made the All-NBA 1st Team, and won the Eastern Conference player of the Month award for his performance in March.
    On July 14, 2004, O'Neal was traded to the Miami Heat for Caron Butler, Lamar Odom, Brian Grant, and a future first-round draft choice (who would turn into Jordan Farmar in the 2006 draft).
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal reverted from (his Lakers jersey) number 34 to number 32, which he had worn while playing for the Magic. Upon signing with the Heat, O'Neal promised the fans that he would bring a championship to Miami. He claimed one of the main reasons for wanting to be traded to Miami was because of their up-and-coming star Dwyane Wade, to whom he gave the nickname "Flash".
    Amid tension between O'Neal and Kobe Bryant, O'Neal was traded to the Miami Heat in 2004, and his fourth NBA championship followed in 2006.
    More Details Hide Details Midway through the 2007–2008 season he was traded to the Phoenix Suns. After a season-and-a-half with the Suns, O'Neal was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 2009–10 season. O'Neal played for the Boston Celtics in the 2010–11 season before retiring. O'Neal's individual accolades include the 1999–2000 MVP award, the 1992–93 NBA Rookie of the Year award, 15 All-Star game selections, three All-Star Game MVP awards, three Finals MVP awards, two scoring titles, 14 All-NBA team selections, and three NBA All-Defensive Team selections. He is one of only three players to win NBA MVP, All-Star game MVP and Finals MVP awards in the same year (2000); the other players are Willis Reed in 1970 and Michael Jordan in 1996 and 1998. He ranks 7th all-time in points scored, 5th in field goals, 13th in rebounds, and 7th in blocks. Largely due to his ability to dunk the basketball, O'Neal also ranks 3rd all-time in field goal percentage (58.2%).
  • 2003
    Age 30
    There had been increasing tension between O'Neal and Bryant, the feud climaxing on the eve of training camp prior to the 2003–2004 season when Kobe, in an interview with ESPN journalist Jim Gray, criticized Shaq for being out of shape, a poor leader, and putting his salary demands over the best interest of the Lakers.
    More Details Hide Details The Lakers made the playoffs in 2004, and lost to the Detroit Pistons in the 2004 NBA Finals. Lakers assistant coach Tex Winter said, "Shaq defeated himself against Detroit. He played way too passively. He had one big game... He's always interested in being a scorer, but he hasn't had nearly enough concentration on defense and rebounding." After the series, O'Neal was angered by comments made by Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak regarding O'Neal's future with the club, as well as by the departure of Lakers coach Phil Jackson at the request of Buss. O'Neal made comments indicating that he felt the team's decisions were centered on a desire to appease Bryant to the exclusion of all other concerns, and O'Neal promptly demanded a trade. Kupchak wanted the Dallas Mavericks's Dirk Nowitzki in return but Cuban refused to let his 7-footer go. However, Miami showed interest and eventually the two clubs agreed. Winter said, "O'Neal left because he couldn't get what he wanted—a huge pay raise. There was no way ownership could give him what he wanted. Shaq's demands held the franchise hostage, and the way he went about it didn't please the owner too much."
    At the beginning of the 2003–04 season, O'Neal wanted a contract extension with a pay raise on his remaining three years for $30 million.
    More Details Hide Details The Lakers had hoped O'Neal would take less money due to his age, physical conditioning, and games missed due to injuries. During a preseason game, O'Neal had yelled at Lakers owner Jerry Buss, "Pay me."
  • 2002
    Age 29
    He married Shaunie Nelson on December 26, 2002.
    More Details Hide Details The couple have four children (Shareef, Amirah, Shaqir, and Me'arah), and Nelson has one son from a previous relationship (Myles).
    O'Neal missed the first 12 games of the 2002–2003 season recovering from toe surgery.
    More Details Hide Details He was sidelined with hallux rigidus, a degenerative arthritis in his toe. He waited the whole summer until just before training camp for the surgery and explained, "I got hurt on company time, so I’ll heal on company time." O'Neal debated whether to have a more invasive surgery that would have kept him out an additional three months, but he opted against the more involved procedure. The Lakers started the season with a record of 11–19. After the Lakers fell to the fifth seed and failed to reach the Finals in 2003, the team made a concerted off-season effort to improve its roster. They sought the free-agent services of forward Karl Malone and aging guard Gary Payton, but due to salary cap restrictions, could not offer either one nearly as much money as they could have made with some other teams. O'Neal assisted in the recruitment efforts and personally persuaded both men to join the squad. Ultimately, both signed, each forgoing larger salaries in favor of a chance to win an NBA championship, which neither had accomplished in his career (and which neither would achieve with the Lakers).
    Matched up against the Sacramento Kings in the 2002 Western Conference finals, O'Neal said, "There is only one way to beat us.
    More Details Hide Details It starts with c and ends with t." O'Neal meant "cheat" in reference to the alleged flopping of Kings' center Vlade Divac. O'Neal referred to Divac as "she", and said he would never exaggerate contact to draw a foul. "I'm a guy with no talent who has gotten this way with hard work." After the 2001–2002 season, O'Neal told friends that he did not want another season of limping and being in virtually constant pain from his big right toe. His trademark mobility and explosion had been often absent. The corrective options ranged from reconstructive surgery on the toe to rehabilitation exercises with more shoe inserts and anti-inflammation medication. O'Neal was already wary of the long-term damage his frequent consumption of these medications might have. He did not want to rush a decision with his career potentially at risk.
    In January 2002 he was involved in a spectacular on-court brawl in a game against the Chicago Bulls.
    More Details Hide Details He punched center Brad Miller after an intentional foul to prevent a basket, resulting in a melee with Miller, forward Charles Oakley, and several other players. O'Neal was suspended for three games without pay and fined $15,000. For the season, O'Neal averaged 27.2 points and 10.7 rebounds, excellent statistics but below his career average; he was less of a defensive force during the season.
  • 2001
    Age 28
    He was ready for the start of the 2001–02 regular season, but the toe frequently bothered him.
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    In the 2001 NBA Finals against the 76ers, O'Neal fouled out in Game 3 backing over Dikembe Mutombo, the 2000–2001 Defensive Player of the Year. "I didn't think the best defensive player in the game would be flopping like that.
    More Details Hide Details It's a shame that the referees buy into that", O'Neal said. "I wish he'd stand up and play me like a man instead of flopping and crying every time I back him down. A month before the training camp, O'Neal had corrective surgery for a claw toe deformity in the smallest toe of his left foot. He opted against a more involved surgery to return quicker.
  • 2000
    Age 27
    Jackson's influence resulted in a newfound commitment by O'Neal to defense, resulting in his first All-Defensive Team selection (second-team) in 2000.
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    They won three consecutive championships in 2000, 2001, and 2002.
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  • 1999
    Age 26
    He was angered by being overlooked for the FIBA Americas Championship 1999 squad, saying it was a "lack of respect". He forwent an opportunity to participate in the 2000 Olympics, explaining that two gold medals were enough. Shaq also chose not to play in the 2002 FIBA World Championship.
    More Details Hide Details He rejected an offer to play in the 2004 Olympics, and although he was initially interested in being named for 2006–2008 US preliminary roster, he eventually declined the invitation. O'Neal established himself as an overpowering low post presence, putting up career averages of 23.7 points on .582 field goal accuracy, 10.9 rebounds and 2.3 blocks per game. At, and U.S. shoe size 23, he became famous for his physical stature. His physical frame gave him a power advantage over most opponents. O'Neal's "drop step", (called the "Black Tornado" by O'Neal) in which he posted up a defender, turned around and, using his elbows for leverage, powered past him for a very high-percentage slam dunk, proved an effective offensive weapon. In addition, O'Neal frequently used a right-handed jump hook shot to score near the basket. The ability to dunk contributed to his career field goal accuracy of .582, second only to Artis Gilmore as the highest field goal percentage of all time. He led the NBA in field goal percentage 10 times, breaking Wilt Chamberlain's record of nine.
    O'Neal was also voted the 1999–2000 regular season Most Valuable Player, one vote short of becoming the first unanimous MVP in NBA history.
    More Details Hide Details Fred Hickman, then of CNN, instead chose Allen Iverson, then of the Philadelphia 76ers who would go on to win MVP the next season. O'Neal also won the scoring title while finishing second in rebounds and third in blocked shots.
    In the November 10, 1999, game against the Houston Rockets, O'Neal and Charles Barkley were ejected.
    More Details Hide Details After O'Neal blocked a layup by Barkley, O'Neal shoved Barkley, who then threw the ball at O'Neal.
  • 1996
    Age 23
    On December 17, 1996, O'Neal shoved Dennis Rodman of the Chicago Bulls; Rodman's teammates Scottie Pippen and Michael Jordan restrained Rodman and prevented further conflict.
    More Details Hide Details The Los Angeles Daily News reported that O'Neal was willing to be suspended for fighting Rodman, and O'Neal said: "It's one thing to talk tough and one thing to be tough." The following season, O'Neal averaged 28.3 points and 11.4 rebounds. He led the league with a 58.4 field goal percentage, the first of five consecutive seasons in which he did so. The Lakers finished the season 61–21, first in the Pacific Division, and were the second seed in the western conference during the 1998 NBA Playoffs. After defeating the Portland Trail Blazers and Seattle SuperSonics in the first two rounds, the Lakers again fell to the Jazz, this time in a 4–0 sweep. With the tandem of O'Neal and teenage superstar Kobe Bryant, expectations for the Lakers increased. However, personnel changes were a source of instability during the 1998–99 season. Long-time Laker point guard Nick Van Exel was traded to the Denver Nuggets; his former backcourt partner Eddie Jones was packaged with back-up center Elden Campbell for Glen Rice to satisfy a demand by O'Neal for a shooter. Coach Del Harris was fired, and former Lakers forward Kurt Rambis finished the season as head coach. The Lakers finished with a 31–19 record during the lockout-shortened season. Although they made the playoffs, they were swept by the San Antonio Spurs, led by Tim Duncan and David Robinson in the second round of the Western Conference playoffs.
    In the summer of 1996, O'Neal was named to the United States Olympic basketball team, and was later part of the gold medal-winning team at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta.
    More Details Hide Details While the Olympic basketball team was training in Orlando, the Orlando Sentinel published a poll that asked whether the Magic should fire Hill if that were one of O'Neal's conditions for returning. 82% answered "no". O'Neal had a power struggle while playing under Hill. He said the team "just didn't respect Hill." Another question in the poll asked, "Is Shaq worth $115 million?" in reference to the amount of the Magic's offer. 91.3% of the response was "no". O'Neal's Olympic teammates rode him hard over the poll. He was also upset that the Orlando media implied O'Neal was not a good role model for having a child with his longtime girlfriend with no immediate plans to marry. O'Neal compared his lack of privacy in Orlando to "feeling like a big fish in a dried-up pond." O'Neal also learned that Hardaway considered himself the leader of the Magic and did not want O'Neal making more money than him. On the team's first full day at the Olympics in Atlanta, it was announced that O'Neal would join the Los Angeles Lakers on a seven-year, $121 million contract. He insisted he did not choose Los Angeles for the money. "I'm tired of hearing about money, money, money, money, money", O'Neal said after the signing. "I just want to play the game, drink Pepsi, wear Reebok", he added, referring to a couple of his product endorsements.
  • 1995
    Age 22
    O'Neal has made numerous appearances in television commercials, including several Pepsi commercials, such as one from 1995 which parodied shows like I Love Lucy (the "Job Switching" episode), Bonanza, and Woody Woodpecker; various 1990s Reebok commercials; Nestlé Crunch commercials; Gold Bond products; The General insurance commercials; and IcyHot commercials.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal began training in mixed martial arts (MMA) in 2000. At Jonathan Burke's Gracie Gym, he trained in boxing, jiu-jitsu, Muay Thai and wrestling. At the gym, he used the nickname Diesel. O'Neal challenged kickboxer and mixed martial artist Choi Hong-man to a mixed martial arts rules bout in a YouTube video posted on June 17, 2009. Hong-man replied to an email asking him if he would like to fight O'Neal saying "Yes, if there is a chance." Hong-man also responded to a question asking if O'Neal had a chance of winning with a simple "No."
    O'Neal became a free agent after the 1995–96 NBA season.
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    O'Neal was injured for a great deal of the 1995–96 season, missing 28 games.
    More Details Hide Details He averaged 26.6 points and 11 rebounds per game, made the All-NBA 3rd Team, and played in his 4th All-Star Game. Despite O'Neal's injuries, the Magic finished with a regular season record of 60–22, second in the Eastern conference to the Chicago Bulls, who finished with an NBA record 72 wins. Orlando easily defeated the Detroit Pistons and the Atlanta Hawks in the first two rounds of the 1996 NBA Playoffs; however, they were no match for Jordan's Bulls, who swept them in the Eastern Conference Finals.
  • 1994
    Age 21
    In 1994, O'Neal made several appearances in World Championship Wrestling (WCW), including at the Bash at the Beach pay per view, where he presented the title belt to the winner of the WCW World Heavyweight Championship match between Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair.
    More Details Hide Details In July 2009, O'Neal served as the guest host for a live broadcast of WWE's Monday Night Raw. As part of the show, O'Neal got into a physical altercation with seven-foot tall wrestler Big Show.
    While in college, O'Neal was considered for the Dream Team to fill the college spot, but it eventually went to future teammate Christian Laettner. His national team career began in the 1994 FIBA World Championship in which he was named MVP of the Tournament.
    More Details Hide Details While he led Dream Team II to the gold medal with an 8–0 record, O'Neal averaged 18 points and 8.5 rebounds and recorded two double-doubles. In four games, he scored more than 20 points.
    O'Neal's third season in 1994–95 had him leading the NBA in scoring with a 29.3 point average, while finishing second in MVP voting to David Robinson and entering his third straight All-Star Game along with Hardaway.
    More Details Hide Details They formed one of the league's top duos and helped Orlando to a 57–25 record and the Atlantic Division crown. The Magic won their first ever playoff series against the Boston Celtics in the 1995 NBA Playoffs. They then defeated the Chicago Bulls in the conference semifinals. After beating Reggie Miller's Indiana Pacers, the Magic reached the NBA Finals, facing the defending NBA champion Houston Rockets. O'Neal played well in his first Finals appearance, averaging 28 points on 59.5% shooting, 12.5 rebounds, and 6.3 assists. Despite this, the Rockets, led by future Hall-of-Famers Hakeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler, swept the series in four games.
  • 1993
    Age 20
    His 1993 debut album, Shaq Diesel, received platinum certification from the RIAA.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal was featured alongside Michael Jackson as a guest rapper on "2 Bad", a song from Jackson's 1995 album HIStory. He contributed three tracks, including the song "We Genie", to the Kazaam soundtrack. O'Neal was also featured in Aaron Carter's 2001 hit single "That's How I Beat Shaq". Shaq also appears on the music video for the release.
    On November 20, 1993, against the New Jersey Nets, O'Neal registered the first triple-double of his career, recording 24 points to go along with career highs of 28 rebounds and 15 blocks.
    More Details Hide Details He was voted into the All-Star game and also made the All-NBA 3rd Team. Teamed with newly drafted Anfernee "Penny" Hardaway, the Magic finished with a record of 50–32 and made the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. In his first playoff series, O'Neal averaged 20.7 points and 13.3 rebounds in a losing effort as the Magic lost every game to the Indiana Pacers.
    In 1993–1994, O'Neal's second season, Hill was the coach and Guokas was reassigned to the front office.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal improved his scoring average to 29.4 points (second in the league to David Robinson) while leading the NBA in field goal percentage at 60%.
    He was named the 1993 NBA Rookie of the Year and became the first rookie to be voted an All-Star starter since Michael Jordan in 1985.
    More Details Hide Details The Magic finished 41–41, winning 20 more games than the previous season; however, the team ultimately missed the playoffs by virtue of a tie-breaker with the Indiana Pacers.
  • 1992
    Age 19
    The Orlando Magic drafted O'Neal with the 1st overall pick in the 1992 NBA draft.
    More Details Hide Details During that summer, prior to moving to Orlando, he spent a significant amount of time in Los Angeles under the tutelage of Hall of Famer Magic Johnson. Given Terry Catledge eventually refused to give O'Neal the 33 jersey, he relented by going back to the 32 from his high school days. O'Neal was named the Player of the Week in his first week in the NBA, becoming the first player to do so. During his rookie season, O'Neal averaged 23.4 points on 56.2% shooting, 13.9 rebounds, and 3.5 blocks per game for the season.
  • 1991
    Age 18
    While playing for Brown at LSU, O'Neal was a two-time All-American, two-time SEC Player of the Year, and received the Adolph Rupp Trophy as NCAA men's basketball player of the year in 1991; he was also named college player of the year by AP and UPI.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal left LSU early to pursue his NBA career, but continued his education even after becoming a professional player. He was later inducted into the LSU Hall of Fame. A 900-pound bronze statue of O'Neal is located in front of the LSU Tigers Basketball Practice Facility.
  • 1989
    Age 16
    His 791 rebounds during the 1989 season remains a state record for a player in any classification.
    More Details Hide Details O'Neal's tendency to make hook shots earned comparisons to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, inspiring him to wear the same jersey number as Abdul-Jabbar, 33. However, the unavailability of said number in high school forced him to wear 32 before college. On January 31, 2012, O'Neal was honored as one of the 35 Greatest McDonald's All-Americans. After graduating from high school, O'Neal studied business at Louisiana State University. He had first met Dale Brown, LSU's men's basketball coach, years earlier in Europe. O'Neal's stepfather was stationed on a U.S. Army base at Wildflecken, West Germany.
  • 1972
    O'Neal was born on March 6, 1972 in Newark, New Jersey, to Lucille O'Neal and Joe Toney, an All-State guard in high school who was offered a basketball scholarship to play at Seton Hall.
    More Details Hide Details Toney struggled with drug addiction and was imprisoned for drug possession when O'Neal was an infant. Upon his release, he did not resume a place in O'Neal's life and instead agreed to relinquish his parental rights to O'Neal's stepfather, Phillip A. Harrison, a career Army Reserve sergeant. O'Neal remained estranged from his biological father for decades; O'Neal had not spoken with Toney or expressed an interest in establishing a relationship. On his 1994 rap album, Shaq Fu: The Return, O'Neal voiced his feelings of disdain for Toney in the song "Biological Didn't Bother", dismissing him with the line "Phil is my father." However, O'Neal's feelings toward Toney mellowed in the years following Harrison's death in 2013, and the two met for the first time in March 2016, with O'Neal telling him, "I don’t hate you. I had a good life. I had Phil."
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