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Shaq Is Not Friends With Joe Exotic, Despite What You See In 'Tiger King'

Gettyimages | Rich Fury
By Ona L

Shaquille O'Neal wants to make it clear that no matter what fans have seen on Netflix’s popular docuseries “Tiger King”, he is not a friend of criminal Joe Exotic. Not only are they not friends, but the retired basketball player also is not in support of the subject of the new documentary. One of the big moments in the series was when they highlighted all the famous and rich people who have visited the G.W. Zoo in the past. Shaq was one of those people who stood out.

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The clip went on to show Shaq giving Joe a nice plug on “Inside the NBA” which he co-hosted for some time. We can see why fans assumed he was friends with Joe, he admitted to visiting the zoo on numerous occasions, he appeared on Joe’s reality show in 2014 and fans are even speculating that he purchased a tiger from Joe or one of his associates. Shaq was not going down like that. The larger than life personality needed to clear up a few misconceptions from the show.

Shaq at Kobe Bryant's funeral
Gettyimages | Kevork Djansezian

He addressed the situation on his podcast “The Big Podcast with Shaq”. The entertainer got candid about the situation he has now been put in because of how chummy chummy he looked with Joe Exotic. “I was just a visitor. I met this guy. Not my friend. Don’t know him. “Never had any business dealings with him,” said Shaq. “And I had no idea any of that stuff was going on.” It’s not hard to believe the athlete seeing as Joe definitely comes off as being good at hiding things.


Shaq went as far as to admit that he made donations to the zoo, but he donates to different people and organizations all the time. He probably thought he was helping these gorgeous cats and whatever other animals that Joe had at the zoo. “People that know me know that I'm righteous. I don't harm tigers. I love tigers,” shared Shaq. What other reason would you want to visit a zoo of tigers? They are regal animals and if paying an admission fee feeds the animals than of course you think you are doing your part.

Shaq caught by paparazzi
Gettyimages | Michael Reaves

Thankfully, Shaq admitted to ditching his love of the zoo once he began hearing rumors about how the animals were being treated. “We found out that he’s involved with all the stuff, and then, actually, I stopped going.” Seeing as Shaq lived it, fans were wondering if he was just as obsessed with the docuseries as they are. Shaq admitted that he believes that, “It's actually a really good documentary.” Yea isn’t that the truth? It seems like the whole world is obsessed with Joe Exotic.

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