Adios, Buona Sera, Ciao....

An A-to-Z remembrance of Shaq's career—basketball and (mostly) otherwise
June 12, 2011

Actors Guild Two Razzie noms (Steel, Blue Chips) and a bunch of box office bombs (Kazaam: $18.8M U.S.), but yup, he's a member.

Buss, Jerry Shaq barked "Pay me" at the Lakers' owner in '03, and Buss continued to do so: some $144M over eight total years.

Conductor Led the Boston Pops in We Are the Champions last December.

Degrees Big Aristotle indeed. Got his B.S. at LSU in '00 ("I can get a real job now," he joked) and an M.B.A. from the University of Phoenix in '05.

Endorsements Reebok, Pepsi, Taco Bell, Spalding, Oreo, Li-Ning, Xfinity....

Fu-Schnickens Lent his voice in '93 for a hook in the hip-hop outfit's song What's Up Doc?, which made the Top 40, then added five albums—each worse than the last—and, in '95, a record label, TWisM.

Gold Four NBA rings, a '94 FIBA world championship and a '96 Olympic medal.

Hack-a-Shaq Origin: Don Nelson. And why not? Shaq missed 5,317 FTs, more than anyone but the Dipper.

International CXT Shaq bought a black-and-orange version of this truck, whose nine-foot-tall cab makes it the highest pickup in the world.

Jabbawockeez The San Diego dance outfit with which he creepily performed in a white mask at the '09 All-Star Game.

Kobe "I'm sorry, who?" After eight mostly sour seasons with Bryant in L.A., Shaq went to Miami and pretended for a year that he didn't know his old sidekick.

LSU Unveiling a statue this summer of its two-time SEC and '91 AP player of the year.

Muslim Hinted at converting long ago. (Then again, he's also said he's Baptist and Jewish.) Still, he's friends with Louis Farrakhan, who attended Shaq's '02 nuptials.

Nicknames Diesel, Shaq-Fu, Wilt Chamberneezy and the Big everything—Aristotle, Cactus, Shamrock....

Omega Psi Phi Pledged at LSU, then stepped with fraternity brothers on a '97 Vibe dance show.

Payless Exclusive carrier of his budget sneaker line, Dunkman, which outfitted less fortunate feet for $40.

Quotes Priceless press-conference zingers (e.g., "Pluto is not a planet, but I am") from the NBA's Yogi Berra fill up shaqquotes.com.

Reality TV He's been Punk'd and seen on Cribs, Jackass and Fear Factor; he hosted Shaq's Big Challenge and Shaq Vs.; and he's dating Flavor of Love contestant Nikki (Hoopz) Alexander.

Superman The Man of Steel's tallest fan adorned his own Orlando home with the comic book character's logo and flipped when Dwight Howard appeared to be copping the nickname.

Twitter More than 3,890,000 followers and 3,600 tweets—including his retirement announcement—for the early adopter, who joined in '08.

UFC A friend of that outfit's prez, Dana White, Shaq fueled speculation that after retiring, he'd finally face 7'2" Hong Man Choi, whom he's challenged in the past.

Video Games The gaming junkie graced the covers of at least six NBA titles, as well as Shaq Fu, a kung fu fighting game.

Wildflecken West German U.S. Army base where Shaq's stepdad was stationed in the early '80s, and where the little big man learned to play basketball.

X-Men Lobbied unsuccessfully for a role in the '00 superhero movie. (Michael Jackson also pleaded to play Prof. Xavier. Both seem pretty smart nonhires.)

Yao Caused a kerfuffle in '03 by asking a reporter to "tell Yao Ming, ching chong yang, wah, ah so."

Zen Master Credited with getting Shaq to play defense, Phil Jackson was either a second father or a Benedict Arnold. Depended on the night.

IN A WORD 500 of SI's Facebook followers offered their one-word take, sorted here by size, on the big guy.

FREETHROWS

DIESEL

SHAQTUS

CELEBRITY

BEAST

CLANK

SHAQTACULAR

10SECONDVIOLATION

CENTER

SUPERSHAQDASHAQUILISTICSHAQBEALADOSHAQS

OVERRATED

SHAQTASTIC

ENORMOUS

PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (LSU)'90--92 PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (HEAT)'92--96 PHOTODAVID LIAM KYLE (MAGIC)'96--04 PHOTOJOHN W. MCDONOUGH (LAKERS)'04--08 PHOTOGREG NELSON (SUNS)'08--09 PHOTOGREG NELSON (CAVS)'09--10 PHOTODAMIAN STROHMEYER (CELTICS)'10--11 PHOTOFOX BROADCASTING/PHOTOFEST (FLEXING)

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)