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Drbio
08-18-2002, 04:50 PM
O'Neal fails to show at camp bearing his name

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Associated Press


TAMPA, Fla. -- Los Angeles Lakers star Shaquille O'Neal didn't appear Sunday at a celebrity youth basketball camp bearing his name, despite a contract that paid him more than $50,000.

Parents paid up to $250 each for tickets for their children so they could take part in a two-day clinic and watch a celebrity game Sunday night which is supposed to feature world champion Lakers center O'Neal along with other NBA stars.

Promoter Darryl Madison says O'Neal did not appear at the youth clinic Sunday afternoon and doubted Shaq would attend a celebrity basketball game that night.

Madison says O'Neal was in the Orlando area, where he owns a home, but he hasn't heard any thing from the big man's camp.

O'Neal also skipped out on a dinner with Florida Gov. Jeb Bush on Friday that was part of the camp program.

Calls to O'Neal's agents on Sunday weren't immediately returned.

LakerMania
08-18-2002, 07:34 PM
Really no excuse for this, despite the Laker forums putting a spin on this news that might cause whiplash to a reader. BUT this still does not outweigh all the other things that he has done for children. A few examples:

Letter from Boys Club to Shaq

"Thanks for being big-time generous. You gave $1 million to the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, which inspired Bill Gates to pony up enough for 30 new clubs, which sparked AOL chairman Steve Case to provide 30,000 computers and 30,000 Internet accounts for Boys and Girls Clubs around the country. And they say one person can't make a difference."

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Big man, bigger heart

Five days after the World Trade Center tragedy, athletes, actors, and other celebrities came together for "Shaqtacular VI," a charity event led by Shaquille O'Neal at Universal Studios in Los Angeles. In an afternoon of games so wacky that even those explaining the rules seemed confused, upwards of $500,000 was raised to help a variety of children's causes supported by Athletes and Entertainers for Kids, with a portion donated to the Red Cross and the firemen of New York City.

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Note: NBA Inside Stuff provided details of what Shaq does for Thanksgiving and Christmas each year. Both "Shaqsgiving" and "Shaqschristmas" have been traditions in Shaq's three years in LA, which he does for the poorer neighborhoods in LA.

For Shaqsgiving, he works the food line, dishing out "mountains of turkey and dressing to 500 families." (NBA.com)

It was previously reported (and passed along by me) that Shaq pays for this out of his own money.

For Shaqschristmas, "he brings bags and bags of toys to pass out to underprivileged kids. But this isn't something he only does on holidays. Shaq is constantly visiting children's hospitals, and always brings along the toys that are still fun for him, but very important with the kids." (NBA.com)

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Shaq and the Beanstalk - Childrens written book by Shaq

NBA Superstar Shaquille O'Neal appeared at the Springfield branch of The Newark Public Library on Thursday, August 12, 1999 to celebrate the launch of his first children's book, Shaq and the Beanstalk and Other Very Tall Tales published by Scholastic. Shaquille O'Neal tipped off the day with a read-a-loud to children from the community.


A ceremony followed with a dedication of a memorial garden in honor of Mr. Lewis V. Graves, branch librarian and community leader who provided 44 years of service to the Springfield Branch and surrounding community. Mr. Graves' legacy as a World War II veteran who committed his life to literacy and learning and to serving the children and families of the Springfield community was commemorated by the garden and a memorial plaque.

Garden dedication to Mr. Lewis V. Graves at the Springfield branch.


Shaq and the Three Bears is one of the "Very Tall Tales." At the event, sponsored by Scholastic, Shaquille announced that he will be donating a portion of the proceeds from his book to the Newark Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) Book Program which will be used at the Springfield Branch. Mr. O'Neal serves as a national spokeman for Reading Is Fundamental, Inc. (RIF), and emphasizes the importance of reading and developing reading skills at an early age to all his young fans. Shaq and the Beanstalk and Other Tall Tales is a collection of treasured stories and fairy tales featuring Shaquille O'Neal with a humorous spin.




Compared to the rest of the league, with all their criminal problems, the Lakers are indeed one of the classier organizations.

Drbio
08-18-2002, 10:57 PM
good post LakerMania. I know Shaq is very generous and that was a good reminder. But I will never credit the Laker organization for being classy.

LakerMania
08-19-2002, 03:27 AM
L.A. Times (http://www.latimes.com/sports/basketball/nba/lakers/la-sp-newswire19aug19.story?coll=la%2Dheadlines%2Dsports %2Dnba%2Dlakers://)

Shaquille O'Neal rested at home Sunday after a high fever forced him to spend about 24 hours in an Orlando, Fla., hospital before being released Friday.

Laker officials on Sunday night awaited results of tests they hoped would reveal the cause of a 103-degree temperature that, in part, caused him to miss a weekend event in Tampa.

"We're waiting the results of the tests," Laker General Manager Mitch Kupchak said. "Right now, that's where it stands. It is our assumption he would not have been released had there not been some improvement. That being said, we still don't know what caused the fever."

The results were expected today.

On Thursday, O'Neal suffered a spike in his body temperature, which eventually dipped and then rose again before doctors controlled it. He was released with instructions to rest and take fluids, according to Perry Rogers, O'Neal's agent.

Both the Lakers and Rogers said they hoped O'Neal's illness would not complicate plans for O'Neal's toe surgery, which is not yet scheduled.

Drbio
08-19-2002, 08:55 AM
Shaq gets a pass. mea culpa.