Shaquille O'Neal has some crazy thoughts about filling your gas tank

We are all Ernie Johnson right now. (NBA on TNT screen shot)

In important NBA news, the man they call Shaq Diesel does not understand the economics of gas.

And, no, we’re not talking about the time Shaquille O’Neal passed it in a crowded elevator at the Super Bowl. This is about petrol, and the Hall of Fame center provided the most confusing take on filling up your tank you’ll ever hear.

Allow me to set the scene: Fellow “Inside the NBA” panelist Kenny Smith is concerned about purchasing a vehicle that will cost him $80 to fill it up, but O’Neal assures him not to worry, because he can simply refill the tank when it’s half empty for $20. Problem solved.

We’ll let Shaq explain:

I have no idea what Shaq is talking about, because he says half of $80 is $20 before telling us “if you put $20 in” a half-full tank, “then you bring it back up to three-quarters.” He also suggests gas costs less the more you stop before arguing gas costs more the less you stop. It’s almost as if he’s thinking about this for the first time while discussing it on a show about basketball during the NBA playoffs.

His reasoning? “Nobody travels more than me,” said O’Neal.

This is, of course, the same man who said in one breath last year that, “The Earth is flat,” because “I drive from Florida to California all the time, and it’s flat to me,” and then said in another a week later:  “So know that when Shaquille O’Neal says something, 80 percent of the time I’m being humorous, and it is a joke. And 20 percent of the time, I’m being serious, but when I’m being serious, you’ll know.”

Nope. Still don’t know if he’s being serious. This is the beautiful madness that is “Inside the NBA.”

The real concern is that Smith — a head coaching candidate for the New York Knicks in the advanced analytics era — entertains O’Neal’s gaseous logic. “I really want to know, because I want to get this car, but I want to save gas money,” he said. “So, please tell me. I want to know how I can save gas money.”

I’m pretty sure gas just costs the price of gas. It doesn’t matter whether you fill up your tank once for $80 or top it off 80 times for $1. It all evens out in the end, unless you leave this flat world with half a tank.

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Ben Rohrbach is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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