If there’s one thing that’s apparent about Shaquille O’Neal, it’s that the legendary basketball player is going to speak his mind when he sees fit. Sometimes he can be somewhat blunt, like he has been when it comes to Kanye West’s recent move and his co-parenting woes. But on most other occasions, the Diesel can be very sweet. This was definitely the case when he shared a firm life lesson with a six year-old before buying the youngster some new shoes.
Shaquille O’Neal crossed paths with the kid in what appears to be a shopping mall. During the encounter, Shaq happened to notice that the young man, named Zion, was crying. The child then explained that he had gotten in trouble with his father. With this, the former Los Angeles Laker told him to give his pop a hug and apologize for what he’d done. Zion did so and, while walking over to his dad, the NBA vet could be heard saying, “What’s wrong with you?” SportsCenter shared the nice moment in an Instagram post, which you can see for yourself down below:
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Words of wisdom and new kicks from a sports icon? You really can’t beat that, if you ask me. An experience like that could leave a mark on just about anyone, let alone a kid. And it definitely sounds like Zion was in awe of when he spotted the 7′ 1″ big man (who towers over even the Rock) out in public. On his own Instagram account, he also recalled all of the purchases that were made and revealed another nice moment that he shared with the retired basketball player and Marvel hopeful:
Over the years, Shaq has had some memorable interactions with both fans and celebrities. One particular moment that really stands out for him, though, is an encounter he had with Halle Berry when she showed up at one of his games. Apparently, he was so taken by the star, that she threw him off just a bit. Though he still managed to sink a key free throw when it counted.
An awkward situation like that and his recent run-in with the young fan are just two examples of how relatable and down-to-earth Shaquille O’Neal can be. It’s honestly no wonder why he’s become one of the most recognizable and beloved athletes the world has ever known. I wouldn’t be surprised if we got more moments like these from him down the road. And of course, let’s hope that young Zion does indeed take the former center’s words to heart.
If you’d like to see more of Shaquille O’Neal, you can do so by checking out his best contributions to movies, TV and more.
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