Top Stories

Jermaine O'Neal Rumors

All NBA Players
Jermaine O'Neal
Jermaine O'Neal
Position: -
Born: 10/13/78
Height: 6-11 / 2.11
Weight:242 lbs. / 109.8 kg.
Earnings: $168,794,021 ($250,722,485*)
A former NBA player says he spent millions to build a sports facility on a property at DFW Airport because the airport promised development around him. He’s now filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against the airport. Former NBA player Jermaine O’Neal built the Drive Nation Sports Facility at the southern end of the airport. He says he built it on airport property because they promised development around him. Now, he’s suing because he says the airport did not keep its word. “This process has left me feeling upset, disappointed,” he said. O’Neal settled in North Texas after his playing days were done. Wanting to grow young players, he built his sports facility.
B/R: Your relationship with Kobe Bryant is covered in the documentary, but did guys like Jermaine O’Neal and Tracy McGrady reach out to you when they were weighing their decisions? Garnett: Yeah, I tried to make myself available for those kids. I didn’t talk to J.O. or Tracy, but I did talk to Kob. Kob and I had a long conversation. I could tell that he had very similar visions for himself coming out of high school to what I had. I said to him, “You’ve got a father who played in the league. All the stuff you’re asking me, you can go ask your dad.” But he wanted to hear it from me. He wanted my perspective. We remained friends after that. But when it came to Tracy and those guys, they didn’t really reach out. Darius Miles was the one besides Kobe that I actually sat down with. I could see a lot of myself in him. He had already made up his mind of what he wanted to do and wanted some advice. We had similar paths. He was from East St. Louis, so we kind of messed on some Midwest-type ish. But he was a student. I saw a lot of myself.
The most improbable part about four-year-old Drive Nation, though, is how it came to be. Its conceiver, the benefactor who has poured $14 million into Drive Nation without taking so much as a dollar in return, is a six-time NBA All-Star who had no ties to North Texas when he moved his family here in 2012. Jermaine O’Neal says he was drawn by the lack of state income tax; the competitive academic and athletic climates for his daughter and son; and his lifelong fandom of the local NFL team. “That investment has not paid me back yet,” he laughs of the Cowboys. “But I’ve got a good feeling it’s coming.”
As for Drive Nation’s grassroots boys and girls basketball and girls volleyball programs, still in their relative infancy, the early dividends have been eye-opening. Participation in basketball (K-12th grade) and volleyball (2nd-12th grades) has mushroomed to more than 2,000 – despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Drive Nation’s Nike Elite Youth Basketball travel-team program already boasts four alumni who were picks in the two most recent NBA drafts: 2021′s No. 1 overall Cade Cunningham (Pistons) and 2020′s No. 21 Tyrese Maxey (Sixers), No. 24 RJ Hampton (Magic) and No. 43 Jahmi’us Ramsey (Kings).
O’Neal has relationships throughout the basketball world. Himself a McDonald’s All-American in 1996, O’Neal is a committee member for the annual boys and girls McDonald’s All-American games. Suffice to say a phone call from O’Neal carries weight. “Now, what I will not do is lie for a kid or parent,” he says. “It will always have to be earned. Because I’ll always have another kid right behind that particular kid. … If I’m going to talk to USA Basketball or Nike or ESPN voters, I value them answering my call, respecting my opinion.”