1) the writer, Allison Samuels (who also works for the Daily Beast), seemed to be actively trying to hook Shaq up. We don't have to point out that such behavior is unbecoming of a Newsweek senior staff writer.
2) Shaq, who was 35 at the time, seemed to think he had an actual shot at then-19-year-old pop sensation Rihanna. In 2007, RiRi was enjoying the commercial success of "Umbrella." Shaq, on the other hand, was enjoying the commercial success of a flabby and injury-plagued season in Phoenix. Plus: he was 35.
Here is the email correspondence between O'Neal and Samuels. For the sake of painting a complete picture of just how much Shaq was overvaluing his desirability at this point, we'll list the women he turns down in the email, hyperlinked to their corresponding Google Image search results: Sessilee Lopez,Robinne Lee, and Sharon Leal. 2007 Shaq would not settle for anything less than Rihanna, apparently.
Samuels: Hi. Sesslielopez@gmail.com [FYI, the email address bounces back]. Or I can give her your info? She's not in the country until Wed so maybe then is better because she hasn't answered me about something else I asked her about. Also she asked about your personal life and I told her_whatever it is_-I'm sure you had it under control. Still waiting on Robinne's response.
Shaq: Sesslie aintdat fine whts robins last name
Samuels: You are so wrong! Robinne Lee_she's on Tyler Perry's show sometimes. Do you know Lauren London_I don't_but I know James Lassiter knows how to reach her. You ever dealt with her_is she cool? Sharon Leal??
Shaq: Loren is d wade's girl im not wrong sesslie aint my type u r