No, Shaquille O'Neal Did Not Sell A Florida Home For $10, Despite What Those TMZ Nitwits Claim
The gossip rubes at TMZ this week published an “exclusive” about Shaquille O’Neal selling a Florida residence “for a cool TEN DOLLARS. Seriously.”
Citing deed records, TMZ reported that the retired NBA star sold the five-bedroom, four-bathroom home in March. An O’Neal family trust bought the 3904-square-foot residence in June 2012 for $235,000, so--according to TMZ, at least--Shaq took an epic haircut.
The TMZ story was picked up by a variety of other news outlets, including the Daily Caller, which branded the sale “fishy” and a possibly “shady transaction.”
Except, of course, that the gossip site appears to be staffed by nitwits.
The crack TMZ investigators, who noted that they had “obtained official documents,” apparently had never previously seen a property deed. Because if they had, they would have realized that deeds like the one O’Neal signed contain boilerplate language reporting that the seller was parting with the property “for and in consideration of the sum of TEN DOLLARS ($10.00) and other good and valuable considerations.”
Those other “good and valuable considerations,” of course, refer to the actual purchase price. Which, in this case, was $240,000, according to Florida property records. So O’Neal made $5000 on the Mount Dora property, which is pictured above. He did not lose $234,990.
Since TMZ, of course, never corrects its laughably shoddy reporting, we’re here to offer five other similar real estate “exclusives” to Harvey Levin & Co. A check of New York City real estate records reveals that:
* “Harry Potter” star Daniel Radcliffe purchased a West Village condo for $10
* Comedian Seth Meyers and his wife last year paid $10 for a Greenwich Village apartment
* Model Gisele Bundchen once paid $10 for a West Village apartment
* “Star Trek” and “X-Men” star Patrick Stewart bought a Brooklyn carriage house for $10 in mid-2012
* For some unknown reason, actress Uma Thurman once sold a Manhattan townhouse for $10
Hopefully TMZ--where checkbook journalism thrives--did not have to pay anyone for its exclusive on O’Neal’s real estate activity. Though the site has previously offered to spread around cash for dirt on the basketball legend.
In 2009, the site was in the market for details of a purported O’Neal extramarital affair. In an e-mail carrying the subject line "$$$ for Shaq proof of pics and story," TMZ editor Eric Colley wrote an alleged O’Neal mistress that “TMZ is willing to pay you $3,500.00 for your written story & proof that you were involved with Shaquille O'Neal while he resided in Scottsdale, AZ.”
Colley’s solicitation was quickly shared with O’Neal, who forwarded the TMZ e-mail to his agent along with the observation "We dnt want them do what they r doing to tiger." O’Neal was referring to TMZ’s coverage of Tiger Woods, who had just crashed his car following a late-night argument with his wife. "they got him wit steroids and all dat shit," O’Neal added.
Seen above, the 63-year-old Levin, a former TV journalist, has repeatedly contended that TMZ only pays sources for “tips.”