Laura Govan is no stranger to the media spotlight. She’s been making headlines for years thanks to her nine-year rocky relationship with Orlando Magic’s Gilbert Arenas. From celebrating their extravagant wedding proposal, to custody battles and of course being accused of cheating on her baller with a then-married Shaquille O’Neal, Laura has had to deal with all of that in silence.
Now, Laura is speaking out, candidly, on the newest spin-off of the “Basketball Wives” franchise. The cameras head to Los Angeles to follow Laura, her sister Gloria, who is engaged to the Los Angeles Lakers’ Matt Barnes and five other NBA-associated ladies.
How is Laura’s relationship with Gilbert? Does she care that he’s filed a motion to stop the show? Is she really a homewrecker? She dishes to Loop 21.
Why did you decide to join “Basketball Wives LA?”
Laura: For me, it was clearing up exactly what was said about me previously on the first season of “Basketball Wives” Miami. And also…I wanted to be the voice of myself, not someone else.
You talked about clearing things up, and a lot has been said about your relationship with Gilbert Arenas and Shaunie O’Neal. What would you like to clear up about those situations?
Laura: For me, I’m not here to clear up sh*t. If I haven’t done anything, I have nothing to clear up. I want people to understand the dynamic of what I actually went through. I’ve never been in the media. It’s always been someone else has the upper hand on that. This was my time to set the record straight on my relationship with Gilbert, my relationship with the Shaunie/Shaquille stuff. It’s been three years. We still talking about that dumb sh-t? And he’s moved on and has 100-past relationships, plus he has a solid girlfriend now. Get your life together! Get the hell out of here!
Were you concerned about still being on the show after Gilbert filed a motion to stop the show?
Laura: Hell naw! I don’t think about nothing until something happens. Since he just filed the motion, that doesn’t mean that it’s happened. Do I think it’s still going to air? Of course I do. Do I think I’m still going to get to say what I want to say? Of course I will. He’s not going to stop that. I just think that at this time I’m just focusing on now–this is my life. So it’s my time; not his time. He had his time. He’s doing his time. You know what I mean?
Have you spoken to him since he filed those papers?
Laura: Yea, I talk to him all the time. He’s still the father of my children. And we have a great relationship. It’s funny because we’ll sit and we’re talking and I’ll be like, “Damn, dog. You’re suing me like a hundred times. Like, what’s up with that?” But, we’re cleaning it up. It just takes time because he’s filed so many goddamn things against me. And now we’re at the point where we’re just cleaning stuff up. We’re just looking to really, really be good parents to our children.
Speaking of your children, there’s a lot that has been documented in the press where the drama has played out. Have your children been affected by that?
Laura: Hell naw! Hell naw, no, girl, they just now learning to read! Now maybe later, they’ll be like, “Damn, y’all were a disaster.” But at this point and time, no, they’re babies. The oldest is five. I have a four year old, a one-and-a-half year old and a two-and-a-half month year old. So, my kids are good. This is what I love about this age. The problem is when they get older. Then, I have to clean that sh*t up, but right now we’re good. So this is my time to clean it up so when they do read the stories, it all just kind of unfolds and it’s like a story being told but there’s an end to it.
What do you hope this show will show viewers about you?
Laura: I think it’s really going to reveal who I am. You know, TV is TV. They can edit and say what they want, whatever juice they have, they’ll put out there. …It was like therapy. I just got to get sh-t off my chest and actually talk about some things I want to talk about and really give you who I am, which is I’m funny, I’m hella’ cute in person, girl. I know they be killing me talking about, ‘She looks busted.’ Man, f-ck you! I look good in person. (Laughs) For me, I’m just having a good time. I’m loving and living life right now with my kids. Like, we’re having the best time ever.
And because a lot of fans want to know…did you sleep with Shaq?
Laura: Hell no! Have you seen his feet? How you gon’ sleep with somebody who has feet like that? Like, I’ve seen him in his sandals. I love Shaquille to death but I would never get down with Shaquille. I know him. That’s why it’s hard for me… I think it’s funny. I can never say no with a straight face because that’s absolutely hilarious. And it’s funny because I feel like when I’ve seen him or been around him, we just have a good time. We’re like brother and sister. And if you don’t pick up on that dynamic then…
I just think that Shaunie [O’Neal] had her own agenda and did things for the show. And it is what it is. But at this point, three years later, I don’t want to talk about him. Talk about somebody else. Talk about somebody I actually like.
Well yes, is there anyone in your life that you’re dating?
Laura: Not yet. Not yet. It might be Gilbert girl, who knows now? I’m not sure…I mean, I do still like the ni__a. …We’re doing good though. He and I are in a good space right now.
—Joi-Marie McKenzie | reprinting with permission from Loop21