Kobe Bryant Once Accused Shaquille O’Neal of Spending USD 1 Million in Hush Money to Silence Women

The late Kobe Bryant once accused Shaquille O’Neal of spending USD 1 Million just to make women conceal information. 

Published on Jun 26, 2024  |  12:01 AM IST |  92.1K
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Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal

One of the most well-known public rivalries in NBA history was between the late great Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal. The two legends became close on the floor while they were teammates with the Los Angeles Lakers from 1996 until 2004. Off the court, though, their relationship was turbulent and quickly turned into a major feud that attracted the interest of both fans and the media.

The Lakers drafted Kobe Bryant in the same year that Shaquille O'Neal signed a seven-year, $120 million contract to join the team. Bryant was a talented and determined shooting guard who aspired to be the best in the world, and Shaq was an unmatched physical presence and a dominant force in the game.

Despite their differences, the two collaborated to help the Lakers complete the unusual feat of winning three straight championships from 2000 to 2002.
Also Read: Shaquille O’Neal Owned Fast Casual Restaurant Franchise Set to Expand Their Efforts Into Omaha

Kobe Bryant's accusation

Even though Kobe and Shaq were the better players on the court, tensions between them continued to rise. When their arguments started to come up in the media, their quarrel became widely recognized. During this turbulent period, Kobe claimed that Shaq had paid women $1 million in hush money to hide his extramarital affairs. To which Shaq retaliated and said, “I'm not the one buying love; he is the one buying love.”

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At the time, Kobe was also embroiled in a scandal after being charged with sexual misconduct. Even though he denied the allegations, he admitted to cheating on his wife, Vanessa, and bought her a $4 million diamond ring as an act of reconciliation. During this period, the relationship between the two Lakers stars reached a dreadful low point.
Also Read: Watch: Shaquille O’Neal Performs as DJ Diesel Alongside Guardians’ Triston McKenzie in Concert After MLB Game

The breakup and aftermath

In 2004, Shaquille O’Neal left the Lakers to join the Miami Heat, effectively ending one of the most iconic partnerships in basketball history. Shaq would go on to win another championship with the Heat in 2006, while Kobe led the Lakers to two more championships in 2009 and 2010.

However, Kobe and Shaq eventually made up. When they got together, which was often, they forgot their disagreements from before and had friendly talks. After Kobe passed away unexpectedly in 2020, Shaq gave a moving eulogy in which he highlighted their profound love and respect for one another and dismissed their rivalry as a myth created by the media.

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One of the most captivating tales in NBA history is that of Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal, who surmounted personal adversities to attain unparalleled success on the court.
Also Read: Scottie Barnes to sign USD 270 million max extension, making him highest paid player in Raptors history 

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About The Author

Agrima Rawat is a lifetime sports fan who enjoys capturing the drama and thrill of athletic competitions.She has

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