Shaquille O'Neal Tells Jimmy Kimmel He Saw a UFO in California Over 20 Years Ago

Basketball legend Shaquille O'Neal has told Jimmy Kimmel that he saw a UFO above California over two decades ago.

O'Neal made the comments on Monday night's episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live! during which the host discussed a "60 Minutes" report looking into the issue of what the government calls "unidentified aerial phenomena" or UAPs.

Kimmel asked a O'Neal for his take on the issue. In response, the former basketball player said, "I totally believe in UFOs," joking that the reason for this belief was that his Inside the NBA co-star Charles Barkley looked like an extraterrestrial.

"Look at his body—he's definitely an alien," O'Neal joked.

O'Neal then went on to tell Kimmel about an incident that purportedly occurred in 1997.

"You know what's crazy, I never told anybody this story," O'Neal said.

The former player said he had been on a double date with three other people one night in 1997 and the group were on their way home from Hollywood Video in Madera, California, when they witnessed something strange.

"Right when we passed the fairground, I could swear I saw a flying saucer come down with all the lights and it was spinning... and then it took off," he said.

"Everything happened in less than five seconds, and we all looked at each other and was like... [looks shocked.]"

"I know that it was a UFO, I don't care what anybody says," O'Neal said.

Its's not clear if the former basketball player was being serious when he made the claim to Kimmel, after all, he once said on a podcast that he believed the Earth was flat, only to subsequently reveal on another show that the comments were a joke.

In an appearance on Jordan Harbinger's podcast "The Art of Charm," the host asked O'Neal: "What's going on with the flat Earth thing? Are you just messing with everybody with that?"

O'Neal, responded: "No, the Earth is flat. Would you like to hear my theory? The first part of the theory is, I'm joking, you idiots. That's the first part of the theory. The second part is, I said jokingly that when I'm in my bus and I drive from Florida to California, which I do every summer, it seems to be flat. When I'm in my plane, and we're getting ready to land, and I open up the window, and I'm looking at all the land that we're flying over, it seems to be flat."

"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."

Shaquille O'Neal
Shaquille O'Neal speaks onstage during the Sports Illustrated Sportsperson Of The Year 2019 event on December 9, 2019 in New York City. The NBA legend told Jimmy Kimmel that he saw a UFO in 1997. Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for Sports Illustrated Sportsperson of the Year 2019