Exclusive: Shaq Agrees To LSU Statue Unveiling

Yesterday I broke the news that a life-size statue of Shaquille O’Neal commissioned by representatives of LSU’s athletic interests - inside and outside the university - had been completed.

Shaq LSU Statue Plans

In July, 2010, the LSU athletic department made a formal request of the university to erect the now-completed statue outside the LSU basketball practice facility. Today I was told that the request was subsequently granted by the school.

Monday I reported that O’Neal, who has anonymously donated millions to LSU over the years after obtaining his degree from the school in 2000, did not want LSU to celebrate him with a statue on campus.

Shaq LSU Statue Plans

But since my story was published Monday morning, that’s changed. Read more…

Exclusive: Shaq Resisting LSU Plan For His Statue

On July 8, 2010, the LSU Athletic Department formally, though quietly, proposed to the university that a “life-size” statue of Shaquille O’Neal be erected outside the school’s new basketball practice facility.

Shaq LSU Statue Plans

At the time, the practice facility was the latest construction project that O’Neal had donated significant funds to. Over the years O’Neal, who completed his LSU degree in 2000, has given multiple millions to the school for the construction of an academic center and on-campus hotel, all the while directing the school not to put his name on any of the new facilities. (He eventually allowed the school to dedicate the hotel pool as the “Shaquille O’Neal family pool” with a small sign.)

But with the construction of the new hoops practice facility, named after the late, great Pete Maravich, a LSU university source recently told me that representatives of LSU’s athletic interests - inside and outside of the university - hatched a plan some time ago to erect four statues outside the building.

Shaq LSU Statue Plans

The statues would be of Maravich, O’Neal, LSU great and basketball Hall of Famer Bob Petit and former LSU women’s basketball star Seimone Augustus.

While it would seem that Maravich would naturally be the first to gain such an honor, I’ve been told that at least two LSU Board of Supervisors members have demanded that an O’Neal statue go up first, because of his profound financial contributions to the school - which were accompanied by requests for anonymity. Read more…

Video: Pat Riley Is Dancing For Your Amusement

You heard me.

Pat Riley Dances

DISCLAIMER: Before you click through to the video, no, you can’t have those :53 seconds of your life back. Read more…

Breaking: Only NBA Player Who Is Faithful Found

The former wife of Shaquille O’Neal, Shaunie O’Neal, appeared last Friday on the syndicated morning radio show Big Boy’s Neighborhood.

Grant Hill and Tamia

During the appearance O’Neal, who created the VH-1 reality show Basketball Wives, revealed the only NBA player who she claimed she knew wasn’t cheating on his wife.

O’Neal:

“Someone asked me recently if I knew any basketball player who is faithful. … I think that I do know one that is faithful. Personally. Read more…

Meet Shaq’s New Live-In Girlfriend (Future Wife?)

Monday Shaquille O’Neal was in St. Louis for Albert Pujols‘ annual charity golf tournament. Afterwards, O’Neal and friends retired to the suburban Sahara Mediterranean Cuisine and Hookah Lounge for dinner.

Shaq and Hoopz

Lounge owner Sam David told the ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH that while the NBA player was in his establishment, he may have made a monumental commitment.

“I think he may have proposed to his girlfriend,” Sam David said today. “He brought a chair into the middle of the dance floor and he put a ring on her finger.”

David said he did not know the name of the woman who was with Shaq, nor of any of the others in the new Boston Celtics center’s entourage.

So if David’s story is true, who is the lucky lady?

Shaq at St. Louis Restaurant Sahara

Read more…

Shaq Renews The Orifice For Yet Another Season

Last year after Kobe won the NBA Championship without Shaq, O’Neal Tweeted:

Shaq Renews The Orifice With Kobe

Last night after Kobe won the NBA Championship without Shaq, O’Neal Tweeted: Read more…

Shaq Legal Move To Doom Sports Wives Shows?

VH1 announced today to the media that its launching a new series called Football Wives, which the cable channel claims will give “viewers a behind-the-scenes look at the glamorous life of the better halves of professional football’s most elite players. Production will begin immediately. The eight-episode 30-minute series is set to premiere later this year.

Shaq trying to shut down Shaunie on Basketball Wivs

(Shaunie reax today on Twitter)

More from the VH1 media release:

“Building on the success of Basketball Wives, we want to take a look at the differences and challenges of being the better half of a player in America’s most popular sport,” said Jeff Olde, Executive Vice President of Original Programming and Production. “We are thrilled to expand this franchise and give viewers access to a new, unique and exclusive world that you have to see to believe.”

Cast members of the show have yet to be revealed but if the past week is any indication, pickings may be slim.

Before Basketball Wives debuted last Sunday, TMZ.com reports today that Shaquille O’Neal attorney Michael Kump sent a letter, dated April 8, to VH1 parent MTV Networks claiming that any mention of his NBA client by O’Neal’s ex-wife Shaunie, who is the star of the show, would constitute a violation of a formal confidentially agreement between the former couple.

Shaq’s lawyer Kump thus claimed to MTV Networks that Shaunie legally was not allowed to mention Shaq’s name on the show, with confirmation of the adherence to that demand required by 5pm today.

Basketball Wives On Vh1

At 5pm PT today, I asked a MTV Networks spokesman in Los Angeles about the status of the show and was told that the company had no comment.

So what kind of chance is there that Shaunie will indeed have to adhere to a gag order when it comes to mentioning Shaq?

Read more…

Shaq is a Whale. He Also Lost $200,000 Gambling

Cool video from Jermaine Dupri’s official website, Global14.com.

Shaq lost 200 stacks to Dupri Video

(Dupri took 200 stacks from Shaq? Sure it wasn’t flapjacks?)

Dupri chronicles his day at the All-Star Game in Dallas, and has a mildly amusing interchange with Shaquille O’Neal. In addition to some unfortunate singing, Shaq tells us he previously lost $200,000 gambling with Dupri.
Read more…

Shaq Facing Tiger-like Media, Sponsor Meltdown?

An increasing din emanating from urban gossip blogs about the alleged extramarital dalliances of Shaquille O’Neal has grown considerably the past two months.

Shaq with 4 blondes, Estranged Wife Shaunie

(Inset: O’Neal’s estranged wife Shaunie)

That smoke has since wafted over to RadarOnline.com and TMZ.com, with both outlets now covering accusations from a woman, repped by Gloria Allred, alleging O’Neal harassed her. Also, as recently as today, RadarOnline produced a woman it claimed was an alleged mistress of O’Neal.

So are we starting to get to the point where O’Neal’s rep with the media, fans and sponsors is about to take a monster, Tiger-like hit? Before you answer, keep reading.

On November 5, the urban blog Young, Black & Fabulous alleged that O’Neal was having an affair with Laura Govan,  the fiancee of Gilbert Arenas. The website subsequently produced emails and other evidence in an attempt to prove that O’Neal had trysts with Govan.

On November 10, O’Neal’s wife Shaunie separated from her husband of seven years with the intention of filing for divorce. The couple has four kids together.

After the YBF report, O’Neal drastically curtailed his Tweeting. Ironic considering that he was the first major athlete to use Twitter liberally. Arenas has since denied that an affair happened between O’Neal and his fiancee, though O’Neal has made no public statement about the report.

Vanessa Lopez press conference about Shaq

(Tim Floyd seen hovering, envelope in hand)

Then on December 4, Young Black & Fabulous struck again.

Read more…

Alleged Emails: Shaq & NBA Baller’s Baby Momma

Yesterday I noted how THEYBF.com was once again reporting that Shaquille O’Neal was have an extramarital affair. (His wife Shaunie recently filed for divorce.) The same site in November reported that Shaq had sex with the fiancee and mother of Gilbert Arenas‘ children.

Shaq emails LaTosha Lee Cheats On His Wife

This time THEYBF.com accuses Shaq of having sex *shudder* with the girlfriend and baby momma of Minnesota Timberwolves player Damien Wilkins. Similar to the Arenas report, the website has what it claims is an email exchange between Shaq and Wilkins’ girlfriend, a “stripper from Atlanta” named LaTosha Lee. Read more…