Instagram | @shaq

Shaquille O'Neal Fires Back After Fans Drag Him For Buying Cubs On Netflix's 'Tiger King'

If you've seen Tiger King already — which naturally, I assume you have — then you probably recall clips of Shaquille O'Neal fraternizing with Joe Exotic and his tiger cubs.

While the documentary didn't shine too much light on that particular exchange, fans are still up in arms and Shaq is not having it.

It seems like this global quarantine's only saving grace has been the work of a completely unstable, gun-toting, mullet-sporting, drug-addicted YouTuber/fake musician/zoo keeper who goes by the name Joe Exotic.

Now, there's a sentence I never thought I would say...

The documentary, 'Tiger King' has swept the nation, conveniently when we're all stuck at home watching, literally, anything and everything on Netflix.

We almost didn't even have a choice.

Watching Tiger King was inevitable.

It was about eight cruel, appauling, stressful, deeply concerning hours of my life that I will never get back.

But it was worth it just to understand virtually every meme on the Internet rn.

Anyways, if you watched the show, you probably remember spotting NBA star, Shaquille O'Neal.

It turns out that Shaq and Joe were actually pals.

He visited Joe's zoo multiple times, and even featured as a guest on his YouTube series, "JoeExoticTV".


Adding insult to injury, Shaq even gave Joe a shout-out on an episode of Inside the NBA.

"Yesterday, on my day off, I went to the G.W. Zoo — shoutout to Exotic Joe — I got two more tigers," he said.


As expected, there was no way in hell fans were going to let this slide.

Since the series went viral, Shaq has been getting, justifiably, a ton of backlash.

I mean, not only was Joe a massive perpetrator of animal cruelty, he was also convicted for attempting to have someone murdered.

This is probably not the kind of person you wanna associate with. Just sayin'.

Shaq has now come forward to defend himself and fire back at the fans who have been dragging him for fraternizing with Joe Exotic.

In the latest episode of his podcast he revealed that he is, in fact, not actually friends with Joe.

"I don't harm tigers. I love tigers. I love white tigers," he said.


"We go in [the G.W. Zoo], and it's a beautiful place, and the character that was there was Exotic Joe."

"We're there, and I dropped some donations for the tigers' foods and all that. We take pictures with tigers."

He then revealed that upon learning about Joe's legal disputes, he stopped visiting the zoo.

"Then we go back another time and we found out that he's involved with all the stuff".

Instagram | @shaq

"And then, actually, I stopped going," he said.

He also addressed the allegations that he has been keeping tigers as pets in his home.

Instagram | @shaq

"Do I put donations to these zoos to help these tigers out? I do it all the time," he said. "Do I own tigers personally at my house? No."

He reiterated that Joe is in no way considered a friend of his, by any definition.

Instagram | @shaq

"I was just a visitor. I met this guy. Not my friend," he said.

"Don't know him. Never had any business dealings with him," he went on.

Instagram | @shaq

"And I had no idea any of that stuff was going on."

According to NBC Sports, the tigers that Shaq owns live on a farm somewhere in Florida.

It is definitely a relief to know that Shaq doesn't have tigers wandering around his house. But nonetheless, they don't belong on a farm either.

They belong in the wild. Do NOT @ me.