Shaq is a retired basketball player, former rapper and current analyst on the television program Inside the NBA. Standing 7 ft 1 in (2.16 m) 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.
Following his career at Louisiana State University, Shaq was drafted by the Orlando Magic with the first overall pick in the 1992 NBA Draft. He quickly became one of the top centers in the league, winning Rookie of the Year in 1992–93 and later leading his team to the 1995 NBA Finals. After four years with the Magic, O’Neal signed as a free agent with the Los Angeles Lakers.
Shaq won three consecutive championships in 2000, 2001, and 2002. 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. 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.
Shaq’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. Shaq 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 6th all-time in points scored, 5th in field goals, 13th in rebounds, and 7th in blocks.
In addition to his basketball career, Shaq 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
Shaq was looking to expand his business ventures with real-estate development projects aimed at assisting Orlando homeowners 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.
Shaq is on the advisory board for Tout Industries, a social video service startup company based in San Francisco. He received the position in return for breaking news of his NBA retirement on the service.
How Shaq Made His Money – Basketball, Rap Music and Television
Estimated Net Worth: $250 Million
Government Name: Shaquille O’Neal
Birthday: March 6, 1972
[image via CBS Sports]