Shaquille O’Neal Smirks as He Dwarfs Stone Cold Steve Austin Wearing The Undertaker’s WWE Merch in Rare Photo

Published 08/30/2022, 3:30 PM EDT

Stone Cold Steve Austin is one of the most important wrestlers who pushed WWE to a bigger height. His popularity was equal to that of Hulk Hogan in his prime. Everyone wanted a 3:16 t-shirt and everyone was chanting What!? at every live event. It was a great time to be a fan of WWE and the superstars. This popularity also got WWE some of the mainstream celebrities to appear on their live TV like Shaquille O’Neal.

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Among Mike Tyson and Mr. T, there was another legend who opened the gates for other celebrities to collaborate with wrestling companies. Shaquille O’Neal is an NBA Legend, but he is so much more than that. Appearing in the iconic Justin Bieber roast to being endorsed by so many sports companies, Shaq has cemented his role in pop culture.

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Steve Austin and Shaquille O’Neal with his sons in a rare photo

A fan posted this photo on Instagram where Shaq is holding his two sons while taking a photo with Stone Cold Steve Austin. One can clearly see how small one of the greatest wrestlers looks beside Shaq’s massive height. You can also see Shaq wearing The Undertaker merch and one of his sons wearing John Cena merch that aren’t manufactured anymore.

There is no other information about the time or place of the photo on the post. But looking at the ages of Shaq’s children, this must be 10 years ago when Austin had retired from WWE.

Shaq’s appearances in wrestling for over 4 decades

But what about his connection to wrestling? Well, surprisingly, the over 7′ giant has made appearances in 4 different promotions over 20 years. Starting from the ’90s, the man appeared on WCW programming when he gave the WCW World Heavyweight Championship to the winner. Then in the ’00s, the man appeared on WWE TV, having a confrontation with the Big Show while he was a guest host for Raw.

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Then, in 2016, he made another appearance in WWE, this time wrestling for the first time. He participated in the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal but ended up being eliminated by multiple superstars. But this match would also see the NBA giant confront the WWE giant once again. Talks for a match between the two at WrestleMania 33 were happening during the time, but it got canceled.

His last appearance was in AEW, where he beat Cody Rhodes and Red Velvet. He also gives a nod to the recently deceased Brodie Lee. While this would mark the end of the giant in wrestling, we can always hope to see him in the future.

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Comment on what you think about the rare photo that this fan dug up from a forgotten past of WWE below.

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Murtaza Bharmal

519 articles

Murtaza Bharmal is a WWE and AEW writer at EssentiallySports. Pursuing an English Literature degree, he is very fond of both storytelling and the wrestling promotions. His passion for wrestling started when Randy Orton and John Cena were squaring it off in the ring, but it magnified when Sasha Banks and Bayley put on a masterpiece in NXT.

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