MIAMI-- 24 Hour Fitness, and basketball star Shaquille O'Neal announced today a new partnership during a Miami news conference. The partnership includes the creation of new 24 Hour Fitness Shaq Sport Clubs -- the first of which is targeted to break ground in Miami before year-end, the company said. The partnership marks 24 Hour Fitness' entrance into the Miami market. The partnership includes the creation of uniquely branded 24 Hour Fitness Shaq Sport Clubs and also enlists O'Neal as a new face for 24 Hour Fitness print and TV advertising, according to the company.

"I spent the off season last year with a certified personal trainer from 24 Hour Fitness and was thrilled with the results. I love the 24 Hour Fitness brand," said O'Neal. "I am committed to fitness and committed to Miami and thought the best way to show this was to bring the ultimate in health clubs with me. 24 Hour Fitness offers the greatest facilities out there today and I really believe in what they stand for -- fitness made fun and easy for everyone. And you'll all know I am a lot about fun so just wait until you see my Shaq-sized clubs!"

O'Neal joins two other superstars as a member of the 24 Hour Fitness family. Basketball legend, Earvin "Magic" Johnson, who launched a string of successful 24 Hour Fitness Magic Johnson Sport Clubs in 2001 and tennis great Andre Agassi, who's own 24 Hour Fitness Agassi Sport Clubs premiered this past February.

"Working with 'the Diesel' in Miami is truly one of the most exciting projects this company has been involved in," said Mark Mastrov, chairman and CEO, 24 Hour Fitness Worldwide. "Shaquille is not only a phenomenal athlete but also an incredible person. Personally I couldn't be happier about partnering with him and these clubs will be as unique as Shaquille himself. He is committed to entering next season as fit as he's ever been, he's in Miami to win and these new 24 Hour Fitness Shaq Sport Clubs will help him reach his goal. We can't wait to share these clubs with the people of Miami."