NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal had a come to Jesus moment regarding the demise of his almost ten-year marriage to Basketball Wives creator and producer Shaunie O’Neal.
Shaq shared the revelation during his recent appearance on The Pivot Podcast with hosts Channing Crowder, Fred Taylor and Ryan Clark on April 19. During the almost hour-and-a-half episode, the NBA Hall of Famer opened up about his career, his relationship with his father, marriage, how he became so motivated and things he wished he could have done better.
After Shaq credited his dad for how he was able to control his life, Pivot Podcast host Crowder shifted the conversation to his 2011 divorce from Shaunie.
“You controlled your life. I was leading up to saying– with the divorce– you can control your life forever. You can’t control that.”
Shaq interjected, “Naw, I could’ve.”
Crowder disagreed with the mogul, “It’s two people involved in divorce, bro.”
In a moment of absolute honesty, Shaq told the host, “No. Yeah, but no.”
“I’ve never talked about this, and I’m glad you guys asked because I don’t mind talking about this, but I was bad. She was awesome. She really was.”
“She did exactly what she was supposed to do and gave me beautiful kids, take care of the house, take care of the corporate stuff. It was just all me,” he said.
Shaq came clean about not protecting Shaunie during their marriage though he didn’t go into details.
“Sometimes, when you make a lot of mistakes like that, you can’t really come back from that. Sometimes you live that double life and get caught up. I’m not going to say it was her. It was all me.”
Shaq expressed regret over losing his ex-wife to his own ego and misdeeds.
“I had the perfect situation,” he continued. “Wife was fine. Kept giving me babies. Still fine. I had it all. I don’t make excuses. I know I messed up. When that d-word happened, I don’t like to use that word. I was lost. Seventy-six thousand square foot house by yourself. Lost. No kids. Go to the gym. Nobody’s playing. You go to their room. Nobody’s there.”
*The conversation starts at the 19:22 mark*
Given Shaq’s vulnerability and accountability during the interview, it was surprising that Crowder stayed relatively quiet about the 50-year-old’s response of accountability for being a sh*tty husband.
Earlier this month, Crowder caught heat online for his bogus take on Ciara’s love for Russell Wilson. He called the Denver Bronco quarterback a “square.”
“If Russell didn’t have that bread, Ciara wouldn’t be with him. Ciara, she has a good situation,” he said. “You don’t leave Future and get with Russell Wilson. It’s a type. Everybody has a type … and I love him on the field, but he’s fu**ing square.”
Shaq and Shaunie wed in 2002 and divorced in 2011– after separating in 2007. The former couple share four children: Shareef, 22; Amirah, 20; Shaqir, 19; and Me’arah, 15. Shaunie has another son, Myles, 24, from a previous relationship.
Shaunie announced that she was engaged to Pastor Keion Henderson in November 2021.