We normally stick to music news on Sosoactive, but I thought it would be fun to do a Top 10 on one of the most entertaining athletes of the past 20 years… Shaquille O’Neal. You may know him from his basketball days, but we’re guessing there are a few things about Shaq that you might not know…
Shaquille O’ Neal never really knew his biological father, and was raised by his mother and stepfather who was a career Army Reserve sergeant. Shaq even rapped about it on his 1994 album Shaq Fu: The Return where he dropped the line, “Biological Didn’t Bother, Phil is my Father”.
Shaq is a large individual coming in at around 7’1” and 300+ pounds… needless to say I wouldn’t want to piss the man off. Shaq wasn’t really the type of player to crack skulls, but he did take a swing at Carlos Groves in the 1992 SEC Tournament after a flagrant foul. I saw that one firsthand, and am glad Groves didn’t get his head handed to him.
As with any superstar Shaq loves the nicknames, and probably has more of them than anyone I can think of outside of the Wu-Tang Clan. Some of our personal favorites were The Big Cactus, The Diesel, The Big Aristotle, and Superman. When Shaq retired he said that folks can just call him “The Big AARP” now.
Sticking with the whole “Tough Guy” you probably know Shaq did a popular episode of WWE’s Raw, but I bet you didn’t know he was into MMA. The Big Aristotle began training way back in 2000 in boxing, jiu-jitsu, Muay Thai, and Wrestling. He challenged a fighter named Choi Hong-man in 2009 via YouTube video and while the bought hasn’t happened Shaq again said again said he wanted to fight the man when interviewed at a UFC bout in 2010. Here’s hopin’…
We all know Shaquille O’ Neal has put out some outstanding numbers in his career, but do you know what he lead the team in his freshman year in college? If you guessed GPA you’d be right as Shaq has a big brain to match his big frame.
Shaq starred in quite a few movies during the offseason of his playing days, but one movie was just a wee bit better than the rest unless you’re a fan of Kazaam or Steel. Blue Chips was Shaq’s first starring role and he would get even get to share some screen-time with an Orlando Magic teammate by the name of Penny Hardaway.
When people think of basketball shoes, Jordan is usually the first word to pop out of people’s mouths. You’d be surprised to know that a lot of folks don’t even know that Shaq had an extremely popular shoe in 1992 called the Reebok Shaq Attaq. You might not remember them, but they were the shoes with the basketball shaped pump on the tongue and they were the shoe to have back in the day.
In the 90s Shaquille O’ Neal was everywhere, and we mean everywhere. Did you know the Diesel cut 5 albums including the universally loved (imagine a sarcastic tone) “You Can’t Stop the Reign”.
Shaq has always had a love for law enforcement, and has been a reserve officer in some capacity in both Los Angeles and Miami. He was even given an honorary U.S. Deputy Marshal title in 2005.
As you’d imagine Shaquille O’ Neal is no stranger to video games. He’s appeared on the cover of 6 different video games, and is in dozens of them. The man even had his own game with Shaq Fu on the SNES, and has been a playable character in Ready 2 Rumble Boxing 2, Delta Force: Black Hawk Down, and UFC Undisputed 2010.