Shaquille O’Neal on rejection of Nike: “I wasn’t interested in being another guy on the shelf”

Shaquille O’Neal has enjoyed a successful career in the NBA. NBA fans and analysts often consider him to be one of the greatest centers of all time. His name also appears in the debates surrounding the title “GOAT”. O’Neal has enjoyed various brand mentions throughout his career, including a shoe deal.

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Shaq recently spoke about his snub to Nike, who offered him a sponsorship deal. He was speaking to Joe La Puma of Complex at A Ma Maniere in Atlanta where he revealed details of the debacle. Additionally, Shaq explained how Nike had not offered him the option of having his own line of shoes.

O’Neal said: “When I was drafted they gave me the opportunity to have my own shoe – Reebok. Nike was interested, but they didn’t want me to have my own shoe. Yeah, because I knew at the time that I wasn’t interested in being another guy on the shelf, I wanted to have my own line, my own shoe. I wanted to go out with a bang. You know my motto was to make sure people remember my name. And instead of proving myself first, I wanted my name to be known first to get better later.

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As a beginner he was research for a shoe business with potential suitors. Unlike Reebok, Nike was unwilling to produce Shaq’s own line of shoes. In an infamous incident, he drove to Nike headquarters carrying Reebok products everywhere. He eventually signed with Reebok for a $ 5 million per year contract.

Shaq started his NBA career with the Orlando Magic as the 1st overall pick in the 1992 NBA Draft.

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Shaquille O’Neal destroys Clippers on birthday with 61 point performance

Shaquille O’Neal spent the best part of his 28th birthday on the basketball court. The Los Angeles Clippers faced the Lakers and O’Neal, 28, on March 6, 2000. Shaq was named the NBA’s “Most Valuable Player” this season, which remained his only NBA MVP award.

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – JUNE 12: Kobe Bryant, Lindsey Hunter and Shaquille O’Neal of the Los Angeles Lakers celebrate after Game 4 of the NBA Finals against the New Jersey Nets on June 12, 2002 at Continental Airlines Arena in East Rutherford, New Jersey . (Photo by Sporting News via Getty Images via Getty Images)

O’Neal Mark a career-high 61 points for the Los Angeles Lakers against their city rivals, the Clippers. Recording 23 more rebounds and three assists showcased O’Neal’s MVP qualities. He led the Lakers to a landslide 123-103 victory over the Clippers. The Lakers history books indisputably record O’Neal’s performance that day as one of the best in the franchise.

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