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Former NBA star Shaquille O’Neal helps stranger pay off engagement ring in Georgia

‘I’m just trying to make people smile...That’s all’

Shaquille O'Neal
Shaquille O'Neal (Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

An act of kindness can go a long way, and former NBA star Shaquille O’Neal, popularly known as ‘Shaq,’ showed that to be true when he surprised a stranger by paying for his engagement ring at a Zales in Atlanta.

In a segment on NBA on TNT, Shaq said he was in Zales when he noticed how shy the man was and overheard him asking how much it would be to have his ring paid off.

“The guy just came in, he was a young kid, hard-working guy and was saying, ‘Hey I can come back in the next month, and the next month’ like layaway, he puts the money down,” he continued. “So I said, ‘Tell your girlfriend I got it. I’ll take care of it.’ At first, he didn’t want to take it and said ‘I can’t do that,’ so I said ‘Don’t worry about it, I do it all the time.”

In an Instagram post that has since gone viral, Shaq is seen handing his credit card to the cashier to pay for the man’s engagement ring. The video shows the celebrity shaking hands with the man, patting him on his back and congratulating him on his engagement.

On NBA on TNT, Shaq said he didn’t mean for his post to go viral and said that wasn’t his motive behind the act of kindness.

Instead, he said the motive behind the sweet gesture was the fact that he’s: “...just trying to make people smile... That’s all.”

About the Author:

Jazmine Otey joined the 10 News team in February 2021.