Shaquille O’Neal Says He Told Jason Kelce 'What You Should Never Do’ After Retirement

When Shaquille O’Neal had Jason Kelce on an episode of The Big Podcast with Shaq in February, the former NBA star warned Kelce, 36, not to make the same “dumbass mistakes” he made with family amid his retirement.

O’Neal, 52, told the now-retired Eagles center, “Enjoy your family, brother. I made a lot of dumbass mistakes to where I lost my family and I didn’t have anybody,” on the podcast, calling himself “an idiot” who lives in “a 100,000-square-foot house by myself.”

In a new interview with PEOPLE, O’Neal reflects on his conversation with Kelce.

“What I was telling him was some good information,” says O’Neal. “And with this world we live in, you release information. Some people will like it, some people won’t like it.”

O’Neal, who retired in 2011 after 19 years in the NBA, says he’s “not the guy that’s looking for feedback, whether it’s negative or positive,” as the podcast interview with Kelce garnered social media discourse around O’Neal’s life these days.

“The only time I respond to feedback is if it’s super, super negative or if I’ve done something crazy, and in that sense, I had done something crazy. So I wanted to explain to him that, don’t do this. This is what you should never do,” O’Neal explains.

Shareef O'Neal (L) poses with Shaquille O'Neal (C) and Shaunie O'Neal (R) as he celebrates 18th birthday party at West Coast Customs on January 13, 2018 in Burbank, California.

Shaquille O’Neal poses with his children. CASSY ATHENA/GETTY
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The four-time NBA champion has six children and shares four of them with ex-wife Shaunie Henderson: sons Shareef and Shaqir and daughters Amirah and Me’arah. He also shares daughter Taahirah with former girlfriend Arnetta Yardbourgh and stepson Myles, from Shaunie’s previous relationship.

O’Neal has been honest in recent years about his infidelity during his marriage to Henderson. Over the course of their relationship, which began in the late 1990s and ultimately ended in 2009 when Henderson filed for separation, the couple struggled with his cheating. In Shaq Uncut: My Story, his 2011 book, the basketball great admitted to not being the “best partner” to her.

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Kelce officially announced his retirement on March 4, roughly two weeks after his conversation with the former Lakers star.

O’Neal tells PEOPLE he hasn’t seen the full 40-minute speech Kelce tearfully delivered in front of his brother, Travis Kelce, his wife Kylie, and parents, Donna and Ed, but he’s seen parts of the announcement.

“I didn’t see it, but I saw clips of it,” O’Neal says. “He is just a nice guy, him and his brother. I can tell by conversing with him that we had similar lifestyles going on.”

Jason Kelce #62 of the Philadelphia Eagles and Travis Kelce #87 of the Kansas City Chiefs wave onstage during Super Bowl LVII Opening Night

Jason Kelce #62 of the Philadelphia Eagles and Travis Kelce #87 of the Kansas City Chiefs wave onstage during Super Bowl LVII Opening Night.
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“I actually do have a little brother who I used to beat up on, but he’s not in the pros,” O’Neal says, referring to his half-brother Jamal Harrison, who played college basketball at LSU, where O’Neal won the NCAA Player of the Year award in 1991. “But when he was talking about the interactions with his brother and all the stuff they went through, and we have mutual friends, so I already knew he was a great guy,” O’Neal says of Kelce.

Expanding on his perspective regarding public opinion, O’Neal tells PEOPLE he’s learned to take feedback with a grain of salt. “I don’t take myself seriously. So if I hear something crazy, I go strictly into laugh mode,” he says.

“I mean, there’s not really much you can do, so I’ve just got to laugh it off. I’m not one of those guys who has to portray myself as a regular guy. I make mistakes. But I live by certain principles. Be nice to people, respect people and be who you are. That’s me.”