Shaquille O’ Neal Biography

(Basketball player)

Birthday: March 6, 1972 (Pisces)

Born In: Newark, New Jersey, United States

Shaquille O’ Neal, also known by his nickname Shaq, is a former American basketball player, as well as a former rapper. Being more than 7 feet in height, and weighing almost 150 kg, he was one of the heaviest NBA players ever. After being drafted into the NBA while he was in his early twenties, he soon became one of the most dominant players in the history of the NBA, and helped his teams earn not just NBA Championships but also the Olympic Gold. He earned several awards throughout his career as well, such as the ‘NBA Most Valuable Player Award’ and ‘Finals Most Valuable Player Award.’ O’ Neal finally retired in his late thirties. Along with being a successful basketball player, he is also an actor, and has appeared mostly in supporting roles in films such as ‘Grown Ups 2’ and ‘Blended’, as well as in several TV programs, such as ‘Uncle Grandpa’ and ‘Off to School’. He is also a rapper and has released four music albums till date, his latest one being ‘Respect’. He currently works as an analyst on the popular TV program ‘Inside the NBA’.

Quick Facts

Also Known As: Shaquille Rashaun O'Neal

Age: 52 Years, 52 Year Old Males


Spouse/Ex-: Shaunie O'Neal (m. 2002–2011)

father: Joseph Toney

mother: Lucille O'Neal

children: Amirah, Amirah O'Neal, and Me'arah, Me'arah O'Neal, Myles B. O'Neal, Shaqir, Shaqir O’Neal, Shareef, Shareef O'Neal, Taahirah O'Neal

Born Country: United States

Basketball Players American Men

Height: 7'1" (216 cm), 7'1" Males

Notable Alumni: New York Film Academy, Barry University, University Of Phoenix

U.S. State: New Jersey

City: Newark, New Jersey

More Facts

education: University Of Phoenix, New York Film Academy, Barry University

Childhood & Early Life
Shaquille O’ Neal was born on 6 March 1972 in Newark, New Jersey, in the United States to Lucille O'Neal and Joe Toney. Since his father Toney got arrested due to drug possession when Shaquille was still an infant, he relinquished his parental rights to O’Neal’s stepfather, Phillip A Harrison, who was a sergeant in the Army.
He completed his graduation from Robert G. Cole High School in San Antonio Texas, after which he went to Louisiana State University to study business. During his university years, his basketball skills earned him the name of ‘College Player of the Year’. He dropped out in the year 1992, in order to pursue his career in the NBA.
Continue Reading Below
Career in Basketball
Shaquille O’ Neal was picked by the team Orlando Magic during the 1992 NBA draft. Within the first week itself, his skills earned him the title ‘Player of the Week’, making him the first player to achieve this honor within a week of his debut. He played brilliantly during the season with an average of 23.4 points on 56.2% shooting, along with 13.9 rebounds, and 3.5 blocks per game. Later, he was also named the ‘1993 NBA Rookie of the Year’.
He played brilliantly over the ensuing years and in 1996, he was selected for the Olympics to play for the country as a part of the United States Olympic basketball team. The tournament, which was held in Atlanta, Georgia, proved to be one of the toughest and biggest challenges in his entire career. His amazing skills led his team to winning the gold medal.
In the year, 2000, Shaquille was named as the most valuable player of the NBA. He was signed by the Los Angeles Lakers for three years, for a contract of $88.5 million. Despite the fact that he helped deliver three consecutive world championships to the team (2000, 2001 and 2002), his stint with them was a difficult one. He had several disagreements with team members due to which he was traded to the team Miami Heat.
In 2006, he helped Miami Heat capture the NBA championship, which also marked the fourth championship win of O’Neal’s career.
From February 2008, O’Neal began playing for the Phoenix Suns. However, in his initial games with the team, they mostly suffered loses, for which O’Neal took the blame, saying he wasn’t in tune with the other players.
Later in June 2009, he joined the Cleveland Cavaliers, and played for them in the 2009-2010 season. During this season, he also became the oldest NBA player in the history of the sport. By now, his significance as a player had also reduced considerably.
On 1 June 2011, after playing for a period of nineteen years, O’Neal announced his retirement through social media. Two days later, to officially announce his retirement, he also held a press conference at his home in Orlando.
Career in Music
Shaquille O’Neal had started composing rap music in the year 1993. His first album ‘Shaq Diesel’ was released the same year. With tracks such as ‘I'm Outstanding’ and ‘Let me in, Let me in’, the album was a huge success. Though it received mostly negative reviews, it reached number 25 on the Billboard 200. It eventually reached platinum status the next year.
His next album ‘Shaq Fu: D Return’ was released in 1994. Though not as successful as his first album, it was still a moderate success. It peaked at number 67 on the Billboard 200.
His third and fourth albums, ‘You Can’t Stop the Reign’, and ‘Respect’, were released in 1996 and 1998 respectively. While his third album stood at number 82 on the Billboard 200, his fourth album did better, and stood at number 58.
He had composed a fifth album as well, named ‘Shaquille O'Neal Presents His Superfriends, Vol. 1’. Though it was set to release in the year 2001, it was never released.
Career in Acting
’Blue Chips,’ a 1994 basketball drama, was the first movie of Shaquille O’Neal’s acting career. Directed by William Friedkin, the film also starred Nick Nolte, Mary McDonnell, Ed O'Neill, J. T. Walsh and Alfre Woodard. The film, however, didn’t do well commercially. It received mostly mixed reviews.
He played a lead role in the 1997 American superhero action film ‘Steel’. Written and directed by Kenneth Johnson, the movie was based on Steel, a DC Comics character. The movie, however, turned out to be a commercial failure. Reviews were mostly negative.
O’Neal appeared in several movies over the next few years, including ‘The Wash’ (2001), ‘The House Bunny’ (2008), ‘Grown Ups 2’, (2013), and ‘Blended’ (2014).
Awards & Achievements
Shaquille O’Neal’s amazing skills in basketball have earned him numerous awards, such as the FIBA World Championship MVP (1994), USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year (1994), and NBA Most Valuable Player (2000).
Personal Life & Legacy
Shaquille O’Neal married Shaunie Nelson in the year 2002. They have four children. He also has a daughter from a previous relationship with Arnetta Yarbourgh. Shaunie and O’Neal eventually divorced.
He currently lives in Orlando, Florida, where he has also created an indoor basketball court.

Follow Shaquille O’ Neal On:

See the events in life of Shaquille O’ Neal in Chronological Order

How To Cite

Article Title
- Shaquille O’ Neal Biography
- Editors,

People Also Viewed

LeBron James Biography
LeBron James
Kyrie Irving Biography
Kyrie Irving
Stephen Curry Biography
Stephen Curry
Kevin Durant Biography
Kevin Durant
Jayson Tatum Biography
Jayson Tatum
LeBron James Jr. Biography
LeBron James Jr.
Blake Griffin Biography
Blake Griffin
Carmelo Anthony Biography
Carmelo Anthony