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It's hard not to love Shaq. He's managed to create a superstar persona out of being a lovable oaf.
Oh, and there's that whole basketball thing. He's one of the greatest players of all time, if only because of his size.
But, yesterday, the Big Diesel finally went and announced his retirement from the sport that made him famous. He had to face the facts: He can't run flat out from one side of the court to the other in those size 23 Reeboks forever. So, now, he'll have to resort back to being what can only be described as a "big galoot."
Well, that's not entirely true; he's got plenty of activities to fall back on. During his career, he tried his hand as a rap star, as a reality TV star, and as a movie star. But none earned him the notoriety that basketball did. Actually, they probably earned him more laughs than anything else.
We can't decide which of his movie roles was more believable: 1996's Kazaam, where he played a rapping genie, or the following year's Steel, where he played an armored giant who battled street crime.
Still, as bad as his movie career was, his rap career wasn't much better. And now that he's got all this free time on his hands, there's no telling what he'll do. Hit the jump for five reasons why we hope Shaq doesn't return to a career in music.
"Shoot, Pass, Slam"
This is one of Shaq's earliest singles from his first album Shaq Diesel. Really, he was just playing to his audience. But did anyone actually want to see Shaq pass or shoot the ball? Of course not. Just slam that sucker, dude!
Yet another dunk reference from Shaq's first record, Shaq Diesel. This video relies heavily on bad green-screen effects, but they still aren't as cheesy as O'Neal's raps on the song.
"I Know I Got Skillz"
By now, you should see that there's a pattern developing here. Shaq's not exactly a modest guy. A favorite lyric from this track: "I lean on the Statue Of Liberty when I get tired." He also cops one of those high-pitched keyboard lines that was so popular in all the West Coast Gangsta rap songs of the early '90s. Uh, nice try, Shaq? We're guessing Dr. Dre had a previous engagement the day this song was made.
"Biological Didn't Bother"
When Shaq came back with his second album, Shaq Fu: Da Return, we got to see his softer side. On "Biological Didn't Bother," Shaq gave props to stepfather Phillip Harrison with one of his most famous lyrics: "Phil is my father, my biological didn't bother."
"What's Up Doc"
This one's a guest appearance with the Fu Schnickens, who we assume thought that having Shaq do a verse would be their ticket to rap stardom. Little did they know that Shaq would bring down the whole ship.
Clip from Kazaam
Finally, our last plea that Shaq not return to music: His rap in the movie Kazaam. With perhaps the most ridiculous plot in history, the film gave Shaq plenty of opportunities to rap. The bad news? This is one of the better ones.