While we know that Tami Roman left behind Basketball Wives in Season 8 in small part because of her issues with former co-star Evelyn Lozada, as it turns out, she also found herself no longer in a good place with another staple cast member — Shaunie O’Neal.
While visiting Keyshia Cole‘s Fox Soul talk show One on One With Keyshia Cole, she was asked about where things stood with Basketball Wives executive producer O’Neal, and she chose to keep it real.
“I thought in my mind that we were close. I thought that we had a camaraderie and a sisterhood and a mutual respect for each other,” she said. “I found out over the past three seasons that the lack of friendship was shown rather than the sisterhood as it pertained to me, which was unfortunate because I care for Shaunie.”
The 49-year-old says favoritism towards Lozada, and bringing her back to the series, was behind this new side of her so-called sister.
“I think that when I went back to the show, Basketball Wives LA in 2015, I thought that cast was great,” she said. “We had Mehgan [James] and we had Brandi [Maxiell], we had Malaysia [Pargo], Jackie [Christie]. I thought it was great. And then 2016 entered what I like to call the demon seed.”
“The whole dynamic changed. And for me it was just not a happy place to be once she returned,” she added. “And this is no secret. She doesn’t like me, she never has liked me, I tried to be friends, and so now I’ve accepted that she doesn’t like me, so now I don’t like you.”
When asked by Cole if they could have squashed their differences to at least be able to work peacefully on the same show, Roman said Lozada had just taken things too far to go back.
“I tried numerous times,” she said. I really and truly did, and to find out that there were a lot of workings going on behind the scenes and emails being sent and negative, derogatory things being said about my health and my miscarriages all the way up to network executives, I felt like at that point, that was crossing a line for me. So there was no way we could have worked together, for me.”
As for O’Neal, she was aware that her friendship with Roman had been affected, which she shared before Season 8 aired. However, she blamed that on the rumor that Roman helped to uncover about Lozada possibly sleeping with her ex-husband, Shaquille O’Neal. She questioned why Roman told her when she did after knowing the rumor for so long.
“I think that that whole mess definitely affected the relationship between Tami and I,” she said in 2019. “I didn’t want it to because I did feel like Tami was telling me because she gave a damn, but I think that what was in question was ‘when.’ This has been going on for so long or you’ve known for so long. Why now?”