The idea of bidding against the second-richest person in the world is understandably intimidating, even if you're legendary former NBA big man Shaquille O'Neal.
O'Neal, a 7-foot-1 Hall of Famer, says Bezos' massive net worth "scared" him away from his plans to make a bid for ownership of the NBA's Phoenix Suns. "Nobody on this planet can compete with Big Man JB," O'Neal told TMZ Sports on Saturday, referring to Bezos, adding: "Because you know what? I just ordered 50 things off Amazon today. Big Man JB got that money coming in."
O'Neal made similar comments during a recent episode of his podcast, "The Big Podcast." "Jeff said he wants it, and a couple of other heavy hitters said they want it. I'm not even going to put my name in the bucket on this one. I'm not," O'Neal, who played for the Suns from 2007 to 2009, said.
Bezos is one of multiple billionaires reportedly considering a bid for the Suns, according to ESPN. Current Suns owner Robert Sarver said last month that he's putting the team up for sale, after the NBA suspended him following a damning investigation that detailed extensive examples of Sarver's workplace harassment and inappropriate behavior.
Other potential high-powered bidders include former Disney CEO Bob Iger, former Oracle CEO Larry Ellison and Laurene Powell Jobs, the former wife of late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, ESPN reported. Bezos hasn't confirmed the report publicly, and didn't immediately respond to CNBC Make It's request for comment.
The Suns franchise is currently worth $1.8 billion, and could reportedly sell for at least $2.5 billion, according to a recent Forbes report. That might be within Bezos' price range: The Amazon founder is the world's second-richest person, with a net worth of $139 billion, according to Bloomberg.
In other words, he likely couldn't afford to buy the franchise if he tried. But he could join an ownership bidding group with a minority stake, a common move for former athletes — think Magic Johnson buying a stake in the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2012 — to add star power and financial resources to a potential bid.
O'Neal said he'd be open to the opportunity, if Bezos asks. "If [Bezos] wants me on board, I would gladly like to talk to him," he told TMZ, adding: "As far as trying to own a whole team by myself, and go up against him? Let me tell you something: I'm scared of Big Man JB. Shaq O'Neal is scared of Big Man JB."
A spokesperson for O'Neal didn't immediately respond to CNBC Make It's request for comment.