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Shaquille O'Neal Will Open ‘Big Chicken’ Restaurants In San Antonio, Chicken Sandwiches Will Have Unique Names: "Charles Barkley, M.D.E., Shaq Attack..."

Shaquille O'Neal Will Open ‘Big Chicken’ Restaurants In San Antonio, Chicken Sandwiches Will Have Unique Names: "Charles Barkley, M.D.E., Shaq Attack..."

Shaquille O'Neal has built quite the portfolio for himself. Shaq was one of the most dominant players during his career. But since retiring, Shaq has ventured into the business world. One of Shaq's biggest endeavors has been his work in the restaurant business. Shaq owns many fast-food franchises, one of which is Big Chicken. And Big Chicken will be coming to a city Shaq has had a complex history with.

Shaquille O'Neal's Big Chicken will be expanding into San Antonio. Big Chicken had signed on to open franchises in cities across Texas like Houston and Dallas but will be venturing into San Antonio as well. A look at their menu shows some of the incredible names some of the chicken sandwiches will have, including one sandwich named after yet another player with a history with San Antonio.

The fast-casual restaurant franchise Big Chicken — owned by the big man himself, NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal — is entering the San Antonio market.

Josh Halpern, the CEO of Big Chicken, told KSAT that restaurants in the Alamo City are expected to open in 2023 or early 2024. This is part of Big Chicken’s expansion into Texas, which will add about 50 locations across Austin, Dallas and Houston in addition to San Antonio.

The first restaurants will open later this year in Houston and then Austin, he said, though a kitchen in Austin’s Moody Center is expected to open this month.

“It’s going to take us just a few minutes here to get to San Antonio, but we’re really excited to come to the market,” Halpern said. “I know Shaquille has a deep personal connection to the market, and I’m sure he’s excited to get in San Antonio as well.”

This will be the first time Big Chicken, which was founded in 2018 by the Hall of Famer, enters the Texas market.

It currently has stand-alone locations in Los Angeles and Las Vegas, and kitchens in arenas in Seattle and metro New York.

“We’re expanding nationwide. There’s markets that are more authentic to Shaquille for sure, and San Antonio is one of those markets,” Halpern said.

While Shaq never played for a professional Texas team, he played basketball at Robert G. Cole High School in San Antonio and even helped them win a state championship during his senior year.

“So the ability to connect Shaquille and his love of fried chicken in the markets that mattered most are critically important,” Halpern said.

“Big Chicken wouldn’t be growing like it is without the team behind it,” O’Neal said in the release. “My team has done a fantastic job making sure we’re growing in the right way, with the right people. Now, we’re going even BIGGER in Texas and I’m excited to be teammates with Fazil, Frank and Noordin.”

Source: KSAT

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Shaq actually played his high school basketball in San Antonio at Robert G. Cole high school, even winning a state championship in his senior year before he joined LSU to continue his basketball dreams.

During his career in the NBA however, Shaq's rivalry with San Antonio was focused on the Spurs. Shaq's Lakers constantly went against the San Antonio Spurs in the Western Conference. In fact, it was the Spurs who put the 'Hack-A-Shaq' strategy to full use, using Shaq's free throw ability to get the better of him. But it's good to see Shaq put the history behind him and do what he can to bring good food to San Antonio.