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Shaunie O'Neal, executive producer of 'Basketball Wives,' is ready to get rid of three of the show's cast members and possibly the entire franchise after season four sparked petitions and public backlash for showcasing content that many found disagreeable.
During the reunion episode that concluded season four of "Basketball Wives," O'Neal revealed that the show would indeed return for a season five. However, she revealed that she was ready to get rid of three women in the Miami franchise while speaking with The Insider.
"There would be three who are out immediately in Miami. No questions asked," O'Neal said. "Not in anything personal, just not where I'm trying to go. Not on the same page."
O'Neal, the ex-wife of retired NBA player Shaquille O'Neal, admitted that some of the women made her uncomfortable even before the controversial fourth season of the show began.
"I'm very uncomfortable. When you just don't know…you have that 'I don't know' feeling…I run from that feeling," she said. "I had the 'I don't know' feeling going into season four and I should've stuck with my gut. The feeling of, 'I don't think I want to do this' but I did it, but I won't do it again."
However, O'Neal seemed uncertain about her own return to the show that angered over 30,000 viewers who signed a petition to end the series. After lawsuits were filed, episodes of physical assault broadcast and accusations of bullying were made, the executive producer said she is ready to walk away from the show.
"I have no problem walking away from that franchise. I wish and I hope that Tami and I and all of the ladies can sit down and figure it out, because honestly I don't want to go back," O'Neal told The Insider. "One of those things like I'm looking out of the corner of my eye [and wondering], 'is anybody gonna pop off or throw something or hit somebody or take something'. I really just don't want to be apart of it anymore."
O'Neal revealed that she had until the end of the summer to decide if she wanted to return to the franchise and that she was still contemplating the decision. In the season finale of "Basketball Wives," O'Neal consulted with her pastor about returning to the franchise.
Bishop Kenneth Ulmer of Faithful Central Bible Church in Inglewood, Calif., told O'Neal that she may have to walk away from the franchise.
"How long will they go on like this? How many times do the women, cuss, fuss and get mad," Ulmer asked. "Do you resolve this frustration when you see these women clawing at each other? Is it worth you walking away from?"
O'Neal admitted that she was thinking about leaving the show and could no longer agree with the direction it was going in.
"I have really strongly considered walking away. Do I walk away and love the ladies from the distance," O'Neal questioned. "I feel like there's nothing else that I can do. At this point i can no longer defend it, I can no longer stand by it."