*As a former wife of an NBA star (Shaquille O’Neal), “Basketball Wives” star and executive producer Shaunie O’Neal, says she doesn’t condone ball players stepping out on their spouses but she kind of understands it.
“I’m not going to put them all in a box and say they all cheat. There are some good guys and I have met some good guys that play basketball. It’s hard, though. These women come out of crevices of rooms. They’re away from their families and their wives and girlfriends and stuff happens,” Shaunie told “Access Hollywood.”
“It’s not like, ‘You get a pass,’ but you tend to understand what it is,” she added.
After her split from Shaq in 2010, Shaunie says she is finally in a place where they can laugh at their past marital drama now.
“We’ve put it all away,” explained Shaunie who said she and Shaq still spend family time together with their kids. “We still have fun. We were at my mom’s the other day having a round of free throws. We have a great time. I think we’re actually better friends now.”
However, their relationship wasn’t always so jovial.
“We would get ugly … It took a minute. It was rough,” she said.
Shaq and Shaunie have since been involved in new relationships. She’s currently dating a guy named Marlon Yates who is not an athlete.
“I’m not going that route again,” she said.
Her “Basketball Wives” co-star Evelyn Lozada also swore off athletes but then wound up marrying Chad Johnson. The couple later divorced less than two months after they exchanged vows.
“She was really open and willing to just tell it like it was happening and what was actually going on in her life at that moment,” Shaunie said about Evelyn’s transparency on the new season 5 of the show. “It was pouring out.”
By the way, “Basketball Wives” season 5 premieres tonight, (Monday/08-19-13) at 8 p.m. EST on VH1.