Shaquille O’Neal, better known as Shaq, is regarded as one of the best centers in basketball history. His outstanding performance earned him one season MVP in 2000 as well as three Most Valuable Player trophies in the National Basketball Association (NBA) finals. He became massively wealthy as a result of this that he signed several large contracts during his prime. However, he still insists on making advertisements for The General, a low-brow car insurance business.
O’Neal supports The General Insurance because they insured him when no one else would. He was a poor teenager studying at Louisiana State University at that time. Since then, he has remained loyal to them.
The General Insurance and Shaquille O’Neal’s Loyalty
Matt Eisman explained why O’Neal still does The General Insurance commercials on Bert Kreischer’s Show.
I was interviewing Shaquille O’Neal, so I got to spend the day with him. We go to a hospital to visit all these kids who are in just unthinkable situations. One of the kids asked Shaq ‘why do you do those awful ads with the General?’ Shaq said, ‘because when I was broke and didn’t have a penny, they gave me insuranceMatt Eisman
Eisman also added that O’Neal’s decision to be featured in the Ads was motivated by loyalty.
I am loyal to anybody who’s loyal to me. That was the company that gave me insurance when I was broke, so that is the company I’m going to do ads for because a lot of people are in those situations.Shaquille O’Neal
(Source: Essentially Sports)
Shaquille O’Neal’s Career in the National Basketball Association (NBA)
O’Neal played in the NBA for 19 years. The Orlando Magic drafted him with the 1st overall pick in the 1992 NBA draft. He became the rookie of the year from 1992 to 1993. He played in Orlando from 1992 to 1996.
O’Neal eventually became a free agent in 1996, and the Los Angeles Lakers signed him for a $121 million contract. He played and won three championships with Kobe Bryant in 2000, 2001, and 2002. O’Neal played for the Lakers up until 2004.
In 2004, he joined the Miami Heat and won his fourth championship along with Dwyane Wade in seasons 2005 to 2006 and left the team by 2008. Later on in his career, he also played for Phoenix Suns from 2008 to2009, Cleveland Cavaliers from 2009 to 2010, and Boston Celtics from 2010 to 2011. (Source: Essentially Sports)
Shaquille O’Neal Outside Basketball
O’Neal is a very business-minded individual. He isn’t resting on his laurels after a successful playing career, and in fact, he is actively looking for business prospects to prepare for full-time retirement. O’Neal was one of the first stock buyers for major corporations, including Apple and Google, buying stock for them while still in the league in the 1990s. He has also invested in food companies such as Five Guys Burger and Fries, Krispy Kreme Donuts, and Pizza Hut.
O’Neal is reported to own 155 Five Guys restaurants, 12 Auntie Anne’s Restaurants, 150 car washes, and 40 24-hour fitness centers. He is also a member of the board of directors and a brand ambassador for Papa John’s Pizza. O’Neal’s most valuable investment has to be his position as a minority owner of the Sacramento Kings, a team he famously criticized in a playoff interview. (Source: Essentially Sports)