*Looks like Shaquille O’Neal’s appearance as a guest host on WWE Raw in 2009 wasn’t just for play.
The Arizona Republic‘s Paul Coro revealed that the experience did rub off on the now retired basketball great as he put his wrestling skills to use during an incident involving his former Phoenix Suns teammate Gordan Giriček. The incident, as told by former Suns player Grant Hill, occurred in April 2008 after the Suns’ Game 1 loss to San Antonio in the playoffs.
Tension and “an awkward discomfort” from the loss spilled over into a verbal altercation between O’Neal and Giriček during a closed practice. The argument was so heated that O’Neal ended up putting a sleeper hold on Giriček, who passed out.
It’s not known how things turned with Giricek out after the incident, but one thing is known. At the time, he was only with the Suns six weeks. Although he played in the remainder of the season, that season would be Giriček s last.
The moral of the story: never mess with anyone bigger than you who can easily make your future in the NBA a brief transition into something that doesn’t include violent confrontations.
*Former NBA star Grant Hill may be retired but that doesn’t stop him working; he just landed a new hosting gig.
Hill will help usher in the return of “NBA Inside Stuff” as a co-host when it returns this fall.
After hitting the paint for 19 seasons, Hill says he is excited for this new venture and helping to revive the show. It’s a weekly broadcast focusing on all the teams and players in the NBA.
On the return of “NBA Inside Stuff,” Hill said “taking what was very, very successful and redoing it years later [is] very exciting.” [Grio]
*Tyra Banks may have taught her contestants how to model from “head to toe,” but “America’s Next Top Model” Eva Marcelle is working it in the middle showing off her new baby bump in style.
The high fashion model took to her Instagram to show her followers her new shape while rocking a bikini.
Eva is now six months pregnant and almost at the end of her second trimester. Congrats Eva!
*After 10 years together, Amar’e Stoudemire has finally given his wife Alexis her dream wedding.
The New York Knicks forward, who originally married Alexis on Dec. 12, 2012 in front of an audience of 12 at their New York City home, threw a second ceremony and a large reception on Saturday evening in Miami, Fla, reports People.com.
“Great weekend with friends and family. Alexis and I are so blessed and grateful,” Stoudemire, 30, Tweeted Monday, sharing a wedding photo.
Stoudemire wore a Calvin Klein suit for the ceremony but changed into Lanvin for the reception, E! News reports. His wife chose J’Aton Couture for the ceremony and Oscar de la Renta for the reception.
Guests reportedly included Stoudemire’s Knicks teammates Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler, as well as Grant Hill and producers Timbaland, Swizz Beatz and his wife, musician Alicia Keys.
The nuptials come just five weeks after Alexis delivered their fourth child, son Alijah Carsares. The couple are also parents to daughters Ar’e, 7, and Assata, 5, and son Amar’e Jr., 6.
*Over the weekend, Russell Simmons, along with his bother, Danny Simmons, hosted the 13th Annual ART FOR LIFE East Hampton Benefit.
This year’s event honored recording artists Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon, Betsy Z. Cohen (Bancorp Inc.), Tamia and Grant Hill (The Grant Hill Foundation), and Marc J. Leder (Sun Capital Partners Inc.).
CNN’s Soledad O’Brien hosted the evening, while Star Jones was on the mic MC’ing the Rush Kids Auction. Musical performances included Anita Baker, Salt-N-Pepa, Melanie Fiona and Diggy Simmons.
We spotted everybody and their play cousin, including: Kimora Lee Simmons, Joseph “Rev. Run” Simmons, Justine Simmons, Angela Simmons, Vanessa Williams, June Ambrose, Star Jones, Salt N Pepa, Rocsi Diaz, Babyface, LA Reid, Tika Sumpter and some other fancy folk.
Check out more photos of the Russell Simmons’ “Art For Life” event at theJasmineBrand.com.
*When you watch the show “Basketball Wives,” you wonder if every woman who is married to a ballplayer is as ratchet as some of these seem to be.
Lets go down the list: Tammy, Evelyn, and Gloria … all women who have exhibited “unlady like” behavior on the show on numerous occasions.
But then you remember that you can’t put all crabs in one bucket and there are wives of basketball players out there who don’t act this crazy.
While they may not be wives, Gabrielle Union, Savannah Brinson and Ray Allen’s wife are all class acts.
The one who may be the quietest, unassuming one is singer Tamia.
In a recent interview, she talks about her life as the basketball wife of Grant Hill.
Since you’re married to an athlete, what are your thoughts on the perception of the “Basketball Wives” franchise?
Tamia: Well, I think the perception is definitely not a reality. I think, to be fair, a lot of those women [on the show] aren’t wives. And I’m good friends with Shaunie. And as far as business is concerned, I applaud her, but I think that it’s definitely very misleading in terms of what our lives are about. I do have a lot of friends who are married to athletes, and a lot of these women are involved in charities, doing all kinds of things behind the scenes and are supportive wives, and — believe it or not — have supportive husbands who are really great guys. I think not only for the women, but I think it just paints a really bad picture about the men as well. I think for athletes in general, people are like, “Why would you want to marry an athlete?” And that goes back to what I was saying to you: what works in one person’s marriage, may not work in the next. So keep your eyes focused on yours! I guess it’s interesting TV, but it’s definitely not reality.
Read more here at Uptown.
*Ever since Jalen Rose’s interview surfaced in the ESPN documentary on the “Fab Five,” the media ran with his remarks and tried to start something with former Duke players and their camp.
One of those players was Grant Hill and he weighed in on Rose’s remarks of being an “Uncle Tom.”
But that controversy has been squashed for months and the two players have (more…)