Legendary basketball player Shaquille O’Neal made a surprise announcement stating that he plans to run for a law enforcement position in 2020.
The former Lakers phenom-turned TNT basketball analyst sat down with WXIA-TV Atlanta to speak on his potential run, saying that he hasn’t fully chosen which state he will run in just yet, given that he has homes in both Georgia and Florida. Shaq could very well take up residency in another state as well before the 2020 election.
O’Neal is often regarded as one of the greatest basketball players of all time. He was also one of the heaviest players to ever do it, at nearly 325 pounds. Throughout a 19-year pro basketball career, O’Neal played for six different teams in the NBA, winning the championship four times. He was named MVP three times, and won All-Star games fifteen times throughout his time on the court.
According to the interview, he has a plan for what he’d do after acquiring the position.
“My style is going to be to surround myself with guys that have been doing it way longer than I’ve been doing it, surround myself with smarter people,” O’Neal said. “And I know it will be successful.”
The famed player has consistently been known for his gracious and charitable acts throughout his life, from paying for the funeral expenses for a teenager who accidentally live-streamed himself self-inflicting a gunshot wound, to purchasing a beloved Krispy Kreme restaurant that was in danger of closing in metro Atlanta so that he and others could continue to enjoy the baked treats.
He continued by saying “I’m a guy that speaks all languages, I can throw on a suit and have a conversation with Bill Gates, I can go in the ‘hood and talk to the homies, and talk to the children. And I know how to run the team.”
Shaq will run for sheriff in 2020 — and he wants to bring back community policing pic.twitter.com/KdeMbBS4S0— Business Insider (@businessinsider) May 27, 2018
O’Neal has always been an open advocate for the good that police do and has often spoken out on his support of those in uniform.
He is also an honorary deputy in Clayton County, Georgia, as well as a reserve police officer in Los Angeles and several other jurisdictions.
In the interview with WXIA-TV, he stated that “This is not about politics for me,” following with, “It’s something that I always wanted to do. It’s just about bringing people closer together. When I was coming up, people loved and respected the police, the deputies, and I want to be the one to bring that back, especially in the community that I serve.”