Stay Tuned
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Thursday, July 14, 2011

It's Official: Shaq Joins TNT

Today, Turner Sports had a media conference call to announced the news that Shaquille O’Neal will be joining TNT as an analyst on the studio show. He’ll sit alongside Ernie Johnson, Kenny Smith and Charles Barkley. He’ll also contribute to NBA TV and throughout the season.

Here are some other snippets from the call today…

O’Neal on his planned “broadcast style”: “I’m just going to try to be charismatic, funny, and very professional. My favorite analytical guy is Bryant Gumbel. I love him. He’s so smooth and he’s intelligent. Hopefully, I can get to that level one day.”

O’Neal on what gave Turner the edge over other networks: “It was very tempting. I have a tremendous amount of respect for [the other networks]. I felt that Turner and TNT was the place for me. It has always been my favorite show. I thought that was just the best fit for me.”

O’Neal on fitting in with an established group: “I don’t think it will be hard for me. I’ve always been a people person. [The] good thing about this show, everyone has their own opinion. Kenny has his opinion from a guard’s point of view, Charles has his opinion from a forward’s point of view and I have my opinion from a center’s point of view. I know it will work out very well.”

O’Neal on concerns about having time to give his opinion during the time allotted: “It is not a concern for me. I’ve always been a team player. I know when to fit in or sit back and relax. I’m just honored that they invited me and chose me. I’m just going to make it more fun than it already is.”

I think Smith and Barkley have a great chemistry, so I hope this doesn’t turn into a “The NFL Today” kind of thing and the chemistry gets totally blown…