Shaquille O’Neal may seem like a merciless, soulless guy when he talks trash to the current generation of NBA players, but he’s a lot more.
The 19-year player in the NBA saw various stages of fame through the course of his career. One theme remained constant – Shaq was someone who always brought a positive vibe to the locker room.
Shaq was goofy, fun to dick around with and dominant on the court. He delivered the goods whenever needed, was there for teammates when they needed him, and never hesitated from going the extra step.
A few of his teammates have come forward with tales of how Shaq was as a brother. Mike Penberthy played for one season in the NBA. This was with Shaq and Kobe on the 2000-01 championship team.
Now an assistant coach with the Lakers, the 46-year-old told the tale of how Shaq came forward to help him in a way that tells us all about how much he cares for those around him.
Mike Penberthy says Shaquille O’Neal offered to pay for the funeral of his dad
Penberthy’s time in the NBA as a player was short, but it was made all the better by being on the Lakers. He told the tale of how Shaq helped him out on various occasions:
“He took me car shopping. He literally said to me, ‘I’m putting the down payment on whatever car you want.’ I told him I wouldn’t let him, but he negotiated a great deal for me on a Chevy Tahoe.”
“You don’t have any suits, do you?” he said quietly, so as not to embarrass the rookie. “No,” Mike Penberthy said. O’Neal then called his personal tailor and paid for 6 suits for the rookie.
“He offered to pay for my dad’s funeral,” said former Lakers guard Mike Penberthy.
— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) April 9, 2021
“When my father died, Shaq offered to pay for the funeral. He’s that type of guy.”