Shaquille O’Neal is one of the richest athletes in the world. The NBA Hall of Famer has racked up a net worth of over $400 million thanks to his elite basketball skills and celebrity status.
Before the Orlando Magic drafted O’Neal, he received a $1 million endorsement deal. However, the big man spent it all in one day because he didn’t have a lot of business savvy. After making that mistake, O’Neal sought financial advice so he didn’t end up like other athletes who didn’t manage their money correctly.
Thanks to his financial adviser, Shaquille O’Neal has generational money for himself and his family. He also has enough money to loan $70,000 to a four-time NBA champion and not ask for it back.
Shaquille O’Neal loves helping people
Shaquille O’Neal’s parents used to help homeless people all the time when Shaq was a kid despite making under $60,000 a year combined. So, when The Big Diesel became a millionaire, he made it a point to help others.
O’Neal loves putting smiles on people’s faces. He once bought a grandmother a van when he found out her kid couldn’t walk. The former LA Lakers superstar has also spent thousands of dollars feeding people who can’t afford to buy food.
The Big Aristotle is a kid trapped in a grown man’s body. He’s a giant teddy bear who loves to joke around and make people’s lives easier and more fulfilling.
Helping random people, though, isn’t all that Shaquille O’Neal does. The 15-time All-Star is such a generous individual that he once loaned a teammate $70,000 and didn’t ask for it back once the player came up with the funds.
Shaquille O’Neal loaned John Salley $70,000
John Salley, who played with Shaquille O’Neal on the Lakers during the 1999-00 season, received a $70,000 loan from Shaq. The incredible part about this story is that Salley never had to pay O’Neal back.
“When I needed cash, he said how much? To this day,” Salley told DJ Vlad of Vlad TV. “$70,000. I went back and he said nah, we’re good.”
O’Neal and Salley won the 2000 championship over the Indiana Pacers. Even though they only played one season together on the Lakers, Shaq and Salley are very close friends.
Shaquille O’Neal has a heart of gold. The former MVP is one of the nicest and most selfless people on the planet.
There will never be another Shaq in the NBA
Shaquille O’Neal is the most dominant player in NBA history. There wasn’t a player or team strong or big enough to stop Shaq from eating in the paint during his prime.
O’Neal has career averages of 23.7 points, 10.9 rebounds, and 2.5 assists. He won three titles and three Finals MVPs with the Lakers and captured his fourth ring with Dwyane Wade on the Miami Heat.
In 2016, Shaquille O’Neal was inducted into the Hall of Fame. A 14-time All-NBA selection, Shaq has his number retired by the Lakers and Heat. O’Neal also has a statue outside of Staples Center in downtown LA.
Stats courtesy of Basketball Reference.
[Correction: An earlier version used unintentionally dehumanizing language to describe Shaquille O’Neal.]