Shaquille O'Neal is one of the wealthiest athletes to ever live. He's a mastermind when it comes to making business and won't hesitate to put his face on multiple endeavors, as long as he believes in them.
But besides being a man who loves to make a buck, the Big Diesel is also pretty generous. We've seen him donate to charity and pay for other people's expenses more often than not.
That's what motivated him to turn down a huge offer from Reebok when he was still in the league. The brand offered him $8 million per year over 5 years and just when he was about to accept, he had an eye-opening moment with a fan:
“I had a Reebok deal, 40 (million) for five (years),” Shaq said in the Full Send Podcast. “And I’m leaving the arena one day and this lady she’s ripping me like, ‘You mutherf—ers charging these babies all this money for the shoes!'”
“I thought about it. I was like, ‘You know what, she’s right.’ So that day, I cut ties with Reebok,” Shaq said. “… I told them I said, ‘Keep the money. This ain’t right. Don’t want to make it no fight. I’ll still wear the shoes and I’ll wear it during the season, but I’ll be looking to do my own thing.'”
Shaq took to Walmart and they struck a deal right away to manufacture some low-cost sneakers.
And, while you won't hear many children saying, "Hey, mom, I want the Shaq 5s for my birthday," it's still pretty dope of him to think of the least favored that still want to hoop.
Shaq's sneakers may not be as pretty or fancy as Jordans, Nikes, or Adidas; but they're affordable and a perennial way of giving back to the basketball community. Well done, Shaq.