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Shaquille O’Neal Once Admitted Religious Beliefs While Revealing Hajj Pilgrimage Dream

Published 07/10/2022, 4:30 PM EDT

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NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal is the perfect people’s person. He has millions of fans around the world and has made a name for himself both on and off the court. Moreover, Shaq’s association with ‘Inside the NBA’ helped increase his image as a media personality.

Interestingly enough, Shaq called himself a people person when a reporter asked him a question regarding his faith. In signature Shaq fashion, he had a quirky answer to the question.

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O’Neal said, “I’m Muslim, I’m Jewish, I’m Buddhist, I’m everybody ’cause I’m a people person.” While fans wondered what Shaq’s faith is, the 4 time NBA champion himself revealed that in 2010. He talked about his plans on taking the Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia, popularly known as Hajj. 

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Shaquille O’Neal- one of the all-time greats

Shaquille O’Neal was one of the hottest prospects as he entered the NBA draft class of 1992. Subsequently, he was selected 1st overall by the Orlando Magic. He set the ground running in his first season itself as O’Neal won the Rookie of the Year award. Shaq averaged 23.4 points, 1.9 assists, and 13.9 rebounds.

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Phenomenal numbers such as these earned him a move to the Los Angeles Lakers, a trade that brought two of the biggest superstars of that time together. The Lakers boasted of having the duo of Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal. Together, they led the Lake show to titles in 1999, 2000, and 2001.

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However, not everything was well between him and Kobe. The franchise traded him to the Miami Heat where he teamed up with a young Dwyane Wade. Shaq formed another solid partnership with DWade as he earned his fourth and final ring in 2006.

Shaquille O’Neal retired with an average of 23.7 points, 10.9 rebounds, and 2.5 assists in a career spanning 20 seasons and having played for 6 teams in the league.

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WATCH THIS STORY: 3 Times 395 Pound NBA Giant Shaquille ONeal Scared The Life Out Of Fans By Diving Head First Into The Crowd

What is your favorite memory of Shaquille O’Neal? Let us know in the comments down below.

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Written by:

Abhinava Ghosh

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Abhinava is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his Bachelor's in Journalism and Mass Communication. Abhinava has been following NBA for the past 6 years and is a huge fan of the Golden State Warriors and Stephen Curry.
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Edited by:

Arunaditya Aima