“I Let Everybody Down”: An Emotional Shaquille O’Neal Spoke About Making Up for Past Failures at Daughter’s Graduation

Published 01/11/2022, 7:00 AM EST


Shaquille O’Neal is considered to be the most dominant player in NBA history and he has one of the greatest resumes of all time. Along with that, he is considered to be a loving father to six children with two former partners. He has three sons and three daughters: Taahirah, Myles, Shareef, Amirah, Shaqir, and Me’arah. However, Shaq does have some strict rules for his children which have been outlined in the past.

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However, Shaq feels like he has not lived up to the expectations set by his own high standards. While attending his eldest daughter, Taahirah’s graduation ceremony, he said, “have six kids when I was young. I missed a lot of birthdays, a lot of graduation. I let everybody down. And I try to make up for that every day. Just try to be the best at it.

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NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 26: Shaquille O’Neal (center) with his family attends the “Uncle Drew” New York Premiere on June 26, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)

He adds “Taahirah, I’m so proud of you. I wanna say I love you and I’m looking forward to you going to law school and getting your master’s and taking over my company so that I can retire.”

Shaquille O’Neal tough parenting style

Shaq has made over $400 million in NBA salaries and endorsements. Off the court, he is considered to be a very successful businessman. Despite his enormous wealth, Shaq expects his children to stand on their own feet rather than rely on him.

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LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – MARCH 09: NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal attends the grand opening of Shaquille’s At L.A. Live at LA Live on March 09, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Tullberg/Getty Images)

One rule of Shaq’s stands above all. O’Neal says that education is more important than basketball. He says that his kids need to show him three degrees to get a part of his wealth. He has also stated that he is willing to invest in any of their ideas, but they have to present them to him first.

What’s next for Shaq and his kids?

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Shaq looks to continue his on-air job as a Basketball analyst on NBA on TNT. Four of his children, Me’arah, Shaqir, Amirah, and Shareef look to follow in their dad’s footsteps and they are all pursuing their educations at various levels. His eldest son, Myles is a DJ and TV personality while Taahirah looks to build her career.

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Vishwesha Kumar

61 articles

Vishwesha Kumar is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. Holder of a Bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering, Vishwesha has been writing content for about 3 years now. He has been following the NBA for nearly 10 years, since first starting off in the year 2012.

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