Shaquille O’Neal has vowed to bury the hatchet with enemies in wake of Kobe Bryant’s hard-hitting helicopter crash death this week.
The living Los Angeles Lakers legend opened up about being rocked by his former teammate’s sudden passing.
“You don’t really know how long you have left,” O’Neal said on the latest episode of his “The Big Podcast.” “I’m all about being hard and all that but … I’m going to have to delete my beef and my confrontation clause. I don’t want to do that anymore.
“I guess I just call all the people I’ve had discrepancies with and say, ‘Look, man, I love you.”
On the same episode, which aired Monday, O’Neal admitted his grief was keeping him up at night, especially on the heels of losing his sister Ayesha, who died of cancer in October.
“I haven’t been sleeping after Ayesha’s death because, not thinking about just the good times, but times I could’ve done something, or I could’ve said something or could’ve done something different, or could’ve loved her more or could’ve shown her more support. And the same thing hit when I found out this news,” he said.
O’Neal and Bryant led the Lakers to three consecutive championships from 2000-’02 — but their tumultuous relationship was no secret and led to O’Neal being traded to the Miami Heat in 2004.
“I’m sick right now,” O’Neal said on the podcast. “And I know some idiot’s gonna bring up the relationship I and Kobe had. Our relationship was that of brothers. We’re brothers on this podcast, John, we argue all the time. But in real life, when I see you and your lovely wife, it’s all about respect.”
Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna were among nine people killed when the chopper they were flying in suddenly crashed into the hills in Calabasas, California Sunday. They were headed to a youth basketball game at the time.