Shaquille O'Neal Says He Was Emotional Hearing About Tiger Woods' Accident (Exclusive)

The basketball legend says the news brought him back to the moment he found out about Kobe Bryant.

Shaquille O'Neal is admitting that he got emotional after hearing the news of Tiger Woodsserious car crash.

In an exclusive interview with the basketball legend, O'Neal told ET's Nischelle Turner that he had to do his research to confirm that the news about Woods' crash was true before he fully believed it.

"When I came around the living room, I saw the car first, beat up, nobody was in it. And then I saw Tiger involved in it, I didn’t want to finish reading," O'Neal recalled. "OK, take a breath and be prepared for whatever. 'Tiger involved in crash and critical condition.' Now I got to do my research. Yeah, OK, all right, I go to TMZ because they know everything and I call with Charles. Is he all right? Man, it could have been worse."

Woods' crash brought O'Neal back to the moment he found out about the tragic death of his friend and former teammate, Kobe Bryant.

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

"When I got the news about my friend, it was shocking. It was like really shocking. I'm like, you know, I just, I was downstairs training with my son, and my son was crying. He said, 'Dad, you ain't gonna believe this,' I'm like, 'Yo, you all right?' You know, you gotta get in front of it, what's wrong. He was like, 'Kobe just passed away.' I was like, 'Stop playing,' because I remember that LeBron had broke his record the night before, so I figured it was the internet BS. So then I grabbed the phone and I see it, TMZ, really reliable. And I just, I broke out. And then I thought, calm down, I was like, you know what, let me still confirm it. And then everybody was just saying, like, it's just so," O'Neal said.

The sports commentator went on to share his well-wishes for Woods, who is on his way to recovery after the crash left both his legs injured.

"I'm glad he's OK. I wish him well. You know, he's, I know him, he's very competitive and he's gonna want to come back and when he does come back, you know, for him to come back and maybe he can win, will be some of the greatest sports stuff ever told, but I'm just glad he's OK," O'Neal reiterated.

O'Neal spoke with ET shortly after the one-year anniversary of Bryant and his daughter Gianna's tragic deaths, admitting that it was a really "tough day."

"Look, I'm 48. I've been through a lot, I've seen a lot. So I was more worried about his mom," he said. "I'm a mama's boy, so that's the first thing I did when I woke up; called his mom and just let her know that I love her."

O'Neal added that he also checked in on Bryant's wife, Vanessa Bryant.

"It was a tough day for the country, but for Vanessa and the kids, and for Kobe's parents, his brother and sisters, it was a tougher day," O'Neal said. "So I just wanted to make sure that they were OK."

O'Neal is set to appear on the wrestling show AEW Dynamite March 3 on TNT.



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