Sportswriter Shaun Scott and his friends Brian Walker and Tony Walker met NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal at Big Chicken restaurant in Las Vegas, Nevada on Nov. 24. Courtesy photo

Sportswriter Shaun Scott and his friends Brian Walker and Tony Walker met NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal at Big Chicken restaurant in Las Vegas, Nevada on Nov. 24. Courtesy photo

A memorable Vegas trip

Sportswriter Shaun Scott meets one of the best NBA players to ever lace up sneakers.

Las Vegas always has been one of my favorite vacation destinations in the United States.

Thanksgiving weekend 2018 (Nov. 24-26), I made the trip to Vegas for my friend Brian Walker’s bachelor party. I was a groomsman in Walker’s wedding on New Years Eve 2018 in Los Angeles a few weeks ago.

We began the bachelor party celebration by renting out a basketball court at the famed Jerry Tarkanian Center. After an hour of 3-on-3 half-court hoops, we took an Uber back to our hotel (Hard Rock Hotel). Before heading up to our rooms, we decided to grab a quick dinner at Big Chicken, which is owned by NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal. The eatery was a short walk away from the hotel. We didn’t expect to meet one of the best NBA players of all time during our trip.

As we were devouring our meals, Shaq just happened to walk through the front door.

We approached Shaq, informing him we were in town for a bachelor party. I asked him if he could take a picture with us. He granted our request and said, “How about a selfie?” I replied, “Shaq, we need the full-effect photo!”

After one of workers at Big Chicken used my cell phone to snap the photo, Shaq shook all of our hands. I felt like I was a little kid, meeting one of the best athletes of all time. While we finished up our food and drinks, a group of kids approached Shaq as well. Shaq was great with the kids and took time to engage with every single one of them. In years past, I have always heard stories about Shaq being one of the most accommodating public figures to the general public.

Those sentiments definitely rang true on Nov. 24 in Vegas. After meeting Shaq, I posted the picture on Facebook, Twitter and sent it out individually to a multitude of my friends via text message. It was an absolutely fantastic way to start a weekend in Vegas!


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@bellevuereporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.bellevuereporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in Sports

The WIAA announced Wednesday that if schools reopen at the conclusion of the six-week statewide shutdown ordered last week by Gov. Jay Inslee, then the state championships will go on as planned. (WIAA photo)
WIAA still hoping to hold state championships in May

But if the school shutdown extends past April 24, those championships could be in jeopardy.

Vikings earn all-league honors on the basketball court

Both boys and girls Bellevue Christian basketball teams were well represented on… Continue reading

Vikings end season at the SunDome

The Bellevue Christian boys lose to Meridian in the 1A state basketball tournament in Yakima.

Games are being postponed in response to coronavirus outbreak

In response to the recent coronavirus outbreak, Eastside schools are taking precautions… Continue reading

Hardwood Classic tips off after coronavirus outbreak

By Benjamin Olson and Andy Nystrom Basketball players took to the court… Continue reading

Relay teams guide Sammamish to boys swim and dive state title

The Totems won the 2A state title for the first time in program history.

Reporter file photo
No changes to state basketball tournament schedules after coronavirus outbreak

State boys and girls basketball Hardwood Classic tournaments in Tacoma, Yakima and… Continue reading

Most school events, including sports practices, on schedule after coronavirus outbreak

All the school districts in the Reporter’s coverage areas — Northshore, Lake… Continue reading

Griswold gives one last performance at state

Sammamish gymnast Sydney Griswold competed at state for the fourth and final time.

Vikings ready to tip off at the SunDome

The Bellevue Christian boys basketball team is competing at the 1A state tournament in Yakima.

Bellevue girls soccer trio named to All-State first team

Bellevue girls soccer standouts Paige Satterlee (senior midfielder), Courtney Serres (senior midfielder)… Continue reading

Wolverines’ postseason run ended by Panthers

The Bellevue boys basketball team lost 54-45 to Seattle Prep in a district tournament game.