At every level of basketball, Shaquille O’Neal dominated. He was the McDonald’s All-American Game MVP after his prep career in San Antonio, Texas. With the LSU Tigers, he was a two-time Consensus First-Team All-American selection. The No. 1 overall pick of the 1992 NBA Draft by the Orlando Magic won four NBA Championships with the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat, earned three NBA Finals MVP awards, was a 15-time NBA All-Star, and was the league’s Most Valuable Player in 2000 alongside the late, great Kobe Bryant. Shaq finished his career playing stints with the Phoenix Suns, Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2016.
One of the greatest players in NBA history carried his monumental legacy on the floor into a massive social impact off of it. Shaq released four rap albums and earned his doctorate degree in education. (Yes, he’s actually Dr. O’Neal.) “The Big Aristotle” worked as a police officer in various cities, acted in numerous movies, and takes on too many business ventures to count. Most notably, O’Neal is an analyst on the Emmy Award-winning TNT show Inside the NBA with Ernie Johnson, Kenny “The Jet” Smith, and Charles Barkley.
But alongside Shaq every step of the way is his family who carries that same passion for life. Who are the family members that keep the 7-foot-1 NBA legend grounded when his long days are done?
Who Is Shaq’s Wife?
Shaunie O’Neal might be an even harder worker than Shaq. The television personality and entrepreneur works primarily as an executive producer of the reality TV show Basketball Wives, the eighth season of which premiered in June 2019.
The couple were married back on December 26, 2002. They share four children together, two born before their wedding and two after. They were together for much of Shaq’s playing career before a brief separation in 2007. However, they filed for divorce in November 2009. The petition from Shaq’s lawyer read in part, “The marriage between the parties is irretrievably broken.”
It’s hard to stay away from the NBA player’s magnetic personality, and he’s dated several women over the years since his separation from his now ex-wife.
Nicole “Hoopz” Alexander dated O’Neal from 2010-12. Model Laticia Rolle and O’Neal were linked for nearly four years from 2014-18 before separating. Shaq’s most recently been connected with television star and Chicago Fire actress Annie Ilonzeh.
Who are Shaq’s kids? Well, they’re busy carving their own legacies with their world-famous father leading the charge.
The oldest is Shareef O’Neal, a prized college basketball recruit who currently plays for head coach Will Wade and the LSU Tigers, his father’s alma mater. Shareef is 6-foot-10 and was rated as a four-star prospect by every major recruiting service after his high school career in California. He transferred to LSU from UCLA in February 2020.
Amirah O’Neal was also a standout high school basketball player at Crossroads School in Santa Monica. “Mimi” was an honorable mention to MaxPreps‘ 2019 California All-State Girls Basketball Team as a junior. She recently decided that she will also be playing college basketball for the LSU Tigers, committing to the program amidst the coronavirus pandemic and spread of COVID-19.
Shaqir O’Neal is next, and the Class of 2021 baller is another national prospect. Rated as the 14th-best player in Georgia, O’Neal plays for Union Grove High School and was dunking in games at 15 years old.
Me’arah O’Neal? She’s not even in high school and is already close to throwing down a dunk. Her highlights are already popping up on social media, and she very easily could end up being the best of the bunch.
Shaq shares another daughter from a previous relationship with Arnetta Yardbourgh. Taahirah O’Neal was born in July 1996 and works with charities and philanthropic causes in Atlanta, Georgia. She earned her Sociology degree from Oglethorpe University.
Myles O’Neal is not Shaq’s biological son, but was born to Shaunie Nelson from a previous relationship. Regardless, Myles maintains a close relationship with Shaq and is building a growing following on social media as a fashion influencer and photographer.
And don’t worry, the O’Neal family wasn’t sitting around bored during the coronavirus quarantine of 2020.
Shaq Family Dance Off
Leave it to “The Big Shaqtus” to have a massive family impacting the world in numerous ways. Don’t expect the O’Neal name to fade away anytime soon.
This article was originally published March 31, 2020.