Matt Barnes, one of ‘Basketball Wives: Miami‘s first stars, has claimed the show’s producers (said to be led by Shaunie O’Neal) used dubious means to force his ex-wife Gloria Govan to remain on the show….even after she requested to leave to focus on raising her family.
Gloria and her sister Laura were invited to join the series to drive ratings because the latter was accused of bedding Shaunie’s husband Shaquille O’Neal. Ostracised by the infamous Miami group, the sisters were then sent to launch the successful ‘Basketball Wives: Los Angeles’ which would go on to be colonised by Miami’s wives after their show was cancelled by VH1.
This week, Barnes has revealed why much of the show’s success came at the expense of his marriage and his ex-wife’s happiness.
His reveal below…
He told VLAD TV…
I don’t even blame the show for us breaking up, by any means. I just think once you open up that book to allow people to look at your private life, you can’t get mad when people comment on it. That was my hardest thing. These people, at the time, were talking about the mother of my children and some people were even crazy enough to talk about my kids, so it took me a while to understand that we allowed this. We gave them access to our life so we can’t cuss everyone out in the world who has something to say that I don’t like about my family.
Then he revealed what happened with Govan, who was raising a young family at the time, urged producers to free her from the bullying and harassment she was facing on the show.
They never wanted to see me, Gloria and the twins happy. They wanted to see like me and Gloria fighting, and Gloria fighting with the other girls, and early on it was just like, I’m not with this sh-t. I tried to pull her but she was under contract and they threatened to sue her and do all this kind of sh-t so she had to stick in there, but it was a mess from the beginning.
He isn’t the first ‘Basketball’ star to claim the show’s producers used draconian contracts to punish stars who fell out of line.
Jennifer Williams, an original ‘Miami’ star’, was allegedly targeted by producers who sought to sue her for breach of contact when she announced plans to sue a cast mate who slapped her and gave interviews about the show’s negative depiction of African-American women.
A suit was never filed.