Shaquille O’Neal Announces ‘The Shaq Bowl’ Kickoff to the Big Game

Shaq Bowl
Shaq Bowl

With anything that involves Shaquille O’Neal you know it’s going to be big, and The Shaq Bowl, a celebrity-studded variety show that’s a mix of live and virtual events, is no exception.

“All this Super Bowl pregame stuff has been boring, so we’re going to change it up,” O’Neal said during a press event to announce the inaugural event. “Everyone is going to be home this year so I said, ‘Let’s do something fun and entertaining for the people. I recruited a crazy lineup with some of my close friends.”

The Show

The three-hour show, presented by Mercari will be streamed pre-Super Bowl LV across numerous digital and social media platforms from “Shaq Bowl Stadium” near the site of the big game in Tampa.

The Hosts

Hosting is NFL Hall of Famer Terrell Owens, 4x Pro-Bowler Chad “Ochocino” Johnson, and Sarah Walsh. O’Neal stresses there will be strict COVID testing and procedures for everyone involved in the crowd-less venue.

Shaq Bowl

The Shaq Bowl

The Starting Lineup

The game portion includes two teams of celebrities, musicians and pro athletes who will compete in a series of challenges for the Shaq Bowl trophy. The players:

Team Kansas City: Diplo, Ezekiel Elliott, Olivia Culpo, Quavo, Steve-O, and The Miz

Team Tampa Bay: Anthony Anderson, Drew McIntyre, Nelly, Offset, Tim Tebow and Winnie Harlow

The Challenges

Games include Celebrity Dodgeball, Tug-of-War, Sauce Showdown, and the Surf’s Up Challenge (which team can last the longest on a mechanical surfboard), and the Hot Wing Challenge.

“In 20 minutes I can probably knock back 100,” Shaq says of the Hot Wing portion, “but I’m not going to do it. I’m not going to mess up this sexy figure that I’ve been acquiring the last two months.”

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In addition to the celebrity challenges, Shaq and singer-rapper Bryson Tiller will compete in a Papa John’s Epic Stuffed Chair race.

The Halftime Show

Multi-platinum recording artist Migos, DJ Diesel and more will headline a Shaq Bowl Halftime Show sponsored by the charitable initiative Pepsi Stronger Together. Pepsi will present Restaurant Battles, showcasing four local Tampa restaurants live on the show competing for a $10,000 grant.

Shaq’s Super Bowl Prediction

The NBA on TNT analyst and Shaq Life star predicts a close game right into the fourth quarter.

“You have the old king [Tom Brady] versus the new prince [Patrick Mahomes]. The new prince won a couple of battles; a big battle last year. But hey, Tom is on top. If I know Patrick Mahomes and Kansas City, and everyone thinks Tampa is going to win, but they’re going to come out. Score is going to be 49-42. A last-second touchdown is going to win the game because in this game you can’t let anyone get two or three touchdowns ahead. I would like to see it go back-and-forth.

“Then with a minute and 30 left and last play someone just throws it in a Hail Mary and catches it. That would be great,” he continued. “The country needs a nice game where everyone is watching. The country needs great entertainment around the game, which is why we’re doing the Shaq Bowl. For them to be neck-and-neck and someone wins at the last minute, wow, that would be great.”

The Shaq Bowl, Sunday, February 7, 3/2c, Facebook, Shaq Bowl Website and Simulcast by LiveXLive