NEW YORK -- As a kid growing up in Newark, N.J., retired NBA legend Shaquille O'Neal often headed to the Boys and Girls Club to hang out with friends and talk with mentors about his future.
"I was there with so many dreams. I learned to be a leader and not a follower," said O'Neal, who retired from basketball with four NBA titles. "I wanted to be Dr. J and play in the NBA and I wanted to be the doctor like down the street. And I did both."
O'Neal, who earned his doctorate this summer, was in New York on Wednesday to work with Tupperware for a charity event in which proceeds would benefit the Newark Boys and Girls Club. O'Neal and Tupperware CEO Rick Goings were competing in a cooking and free throw shooting contest.
To prepare, O'Neal helped Goings with his free throw technique.
"Are you sure about this, Shaq?" said Goings, who joined Tupperware in 1992. "Didn't you have trouble earlier in your NBA career?"
"Stop it," O'Neal retorted.
Goings, with some help from a Boys and Girls Club member, made 18 free throws, while O'Neal made seven smoothies. That meant that Tupperware would donate $25,000 to the Newark Boys and Girls Clubs.
"When I first got to Tupperware, my goal was to make sure we give back," Goings said. "So working with the Boys and Girls Club is a testament to this. I'm so proud of our involvement and look how these students turned out."
O'Neal said he isn't the greatest of cooks, even for his children.
"I'm good at making turkey sandwiches," he said. "I'm also good at cereal and Top Ramen."
What's your favorite meal your mother made you?
"That's Shaqaroni and cheese," he said. "It's still famous to this day."