Shaquille O’Neal often makes the news for his random acts of kindness. Since Kobe Bryant passed away, Shaq vowed to do even more to forgive, ask for forgiveness and just spread joy to everyone he can. His recent mission includes tracking down his high school varsity teammates for a big reunion.
Bring them to Atlanta
Over the years, O’Neal has kept the team photo of the Cole High School basketball team. It’s his memory of those days when he was just a relatively unknown chap who harbored basketball dreams. After more than four decades, O’Neal thought it would be a grand idea to bring all his teammates together for a reunion.
“I haven’t talked to these guys since the 80s. Find them. Bring them to Atlanta. I’mma pay for it. I wanna see them,” O’Neal said.
O’Neal isn’t the type who forgets. He knows he wouldn’t be the most dominant player in the history of the NBA if his skills weren’t honed early on. For him, everything started in high school, where his teammates pushed him to the extreme.
“Without you guys, there will be no me. I played with some greats. But this right here is where it all started. All of you guys taught me how to fight,” O’Neal said.
It was a great deed from Shaq. It’s proof that he did not forget where his basketball journey began. It was also nice of him to credit his teammates for pushing him to be the best basketball player he could be.
Shaq’s reunion with his high school teammates also reminds everyone started from humble beginnings. We know Shaq as one of the best basketball players in history and one of the best TV personalities. But once upon a time, he was a regular lad with a future ahead of him.
One could assume that Shaq’s massive frame greatly boosted his chances of making it to the NBA. But those who have been tuning in to the NBA for a number of years know that height and might alone do not serve as free tickets to the best league in the world.
As O’Neal once related, he had to make it to the NBA because he wanted to provide for his family. Besides, if you’ve seen Shaq in his prime, you’d know that he didn’t solely rely on his brute strength. O’Neal’s gameplay relied on sophisticated post-up techniques, which take years to master. We can say that Shaq started polishing these moves that he utilized to win four titles at Cole High School.