Shaquille O’Neal‘s got a whole lot of money—his words, not ours—but he’s doing something rather humble with it.
In a new interview with People, the former NBA star shared that his favorite thing to do is splurge on others when he’s out and about. “I try to make every day a meaningful moment for a fan, and especially a kid,” he told the publication. “My favorite thing to do is when I’m in Best Buy, Walmart, if I see a kid, get them something that I see he’s looking at.”
Imagine browsing for a little treat or sitting down for a meal, and Shaq himself offers to buy it for you!
O’Neal gave some recent examples, including when he ran into a couple of kids and bought them bikes and scooters. He always gets parental permission first, though. “I always tell them to ask their parents if they’re going to take things from strangers. You don’t want kids to get used to having a stranger come up and say, ‘Hey, I got a whole lot of money. Can I buy you something?'” he joked.
In the past, he’s also gifted a mega fan an Invicta watch, a young boy several pairs of shoes after his mother couldn’t afford them, paid off a young man’s engagement ring when they happened to be in the jewelry store at the same time, bought a young boy a guitar in exchange for making a TikTok with him, and helped find a paralyzed boy’s family an accessible home—and oh, paid the rent for a year.
This penchant for gift-giving isn’t for clout, though; he says he never records his own generous interactions—though some have been caught on camera, like an instance where he brought a homeless woman a meal outside of one of his favorite Texas restaurants. The clip naturally spread like wildfire, and the woman’s family, who had been worrying about her for months, were able to track her down.
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Up next for the charitable NBA king is the second annual fundraising gala for the Shaquille O’Neal Foundation. Simply dubbed “The Event,” the gala is set to include performances from Maren Morris, Maroon 5, and John Mulaney to help provide resources to kids in need. “It’s all about kids,” O’Neal told People. “I’m also part of our communities and schools, and we just do a lot.”
Tickets for the concert range from a very reasonable $50 to $250 and go on sale at 10 AM PT Friday, August 19 on AXS.com, while tables for the private reception, dinner, and auction go from $10,000 to $75,000.