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VH1 Seeks To Score Points Digging For Basketball Dirt

December 7, 2009: They could have called it The Real Housewives of the NBA or  Basketball Janes. Instead, VH1 said it gathered the wives and girlfriends of "some of the NBA's most elite players" to give the viewers a behind-the-scenes look at the "glamorous life of a professional basketball player's wife" in Basketball Wives. Production on the original series is set to begin this month, with the eight-episode 30-minute series scheduled to premiere on March 15, 2010.

The cast is lead by series executive producer Shaunie O'Neal, the wife of Shaquille O'Neal, now with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Shaunie O'Neal in November filed for divorce from Shaquille, the second such proceeding in the couple's seven-year marriage. Shaquille O'Neal starred in his own reality show over the summer, Shaq Vs., which aired on ABC.

The other members of Basketball Wives include Jennifer Williams, wife of Eric Williams, who has been out of the NBA since 2007; Evelyn Lozada, billed as the ex-fiance of former NBA player Antoine Walker, who currently is dealing with financial problems related to debts and investments; Mesha O'Neal, wife of Miami Heat center Jermaine O'Neal; and Faith Rain, the girlfriend of Miami Heat forward Udonis Haslem.

Considering the recent stories surrounding the personal life of golfer Tiger Woods, the official description of Basketball Wives is both apropos and pedestrian.

"These ladies live the life. They drive the best cars, live in the biggest mansions, wear designer clothes and jewelry and only travel first class," according to VH1. "But living the high life is not all glamour. In order to protect it, they have to deal with the jealousies and dramas of living in - and staying in - the inner circle. They must also keep the groupies at bay while their husbands and boyfriends are traveling on the road for over six months of the year playing ball all-the-while wondering if their spouses are being faithful to them."

"Having been around these remarkable women for several years, I have always recognized that behind every NBA star is a strong, exceptional woman, one who must deal with the unique challenges of being married to the game as well as the player," Shaunie O'Neal said in a statement.

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