Shaquille O’Neal is a man of many talents, but his greatest attribute is arguably his ability to secure the bag, as Shaq has never seen a product he couldn’t sell to the masses.
Shaq has always been wildly protective of his brand because of this, as he won’t dish out free advertising for anyone, but especially a competitor in the same industry he has an endorsement deal in. On Friday night in Salt Lake City, Guillermo from Jimmy Kimmel Live! learned this the hard way when he tried to get Shaq to participate in a bit where he brought him a pizza courtside, but Shaq shut it down emphatically because the pizza was not from Papa John’s, where Shaq sits on the board.
Shaq rejects Guillermo’s kind offer of pizza because it’s not Papa John’s pic.twitter.com/P7VtMBRDxw
— dave (@nbadaves) February 18, 2023
It’s a hilarious juxtaposition of Guillermo, who is always being as goofy as possible, and Shaq, who turns deadly serious as soon as he realizes he is being handed a pizza box that’s not the Papa’s. What makes it even funner is that it’s not even a brand name of pizza, just whatever pizza box they have for the in arena pizza, which means Shaq wouldn’t have even been doing guerrilla marketing for a competitor, just eating a pizza that’s not Papa John’s. Still, that’s not going to fly with the big fella, and if you want to get him involved in your bit, you gotta make sure you aren’t diving into one of the 50 areas he has endorsement deals in.
Unlike Michael Jordan, Shaq did not eat the pizza in Utah. Everybody else ate the pizza.