Shaquille O'Neal has always been considered a funny guy and will soon showcase his comedic talents on TruTV's Upload.
“I was always the class clown growing up and I used to get in trouble for it,” said O'Neal in a phone interview with B/R. “I was a clown in the locker room too, though I was never the clown on the court.”
O’Neal, one of the NBA’s all-time great players and characters, is set to bring laughs through Upload on TruTV, which debuts on Thursday, Feb. 21 at 10:30 p.m. ET. The weekly show will also feature comedian co-hosts Gary Owen and Godfrey.
The long arms of the 7’1” NBA legend will tap the nation on the shoulder and show them a collection of the web’s funniest videos.
“It’s just us sitting up there, three different types of humors, and we just go at it,” O’Neal said. “We just riff about what we see. Hopefully, people just sit there and laugh.”
The show is O'Neal unfiltered, as the trio selects the funniest, most outrageous viral clips from the Internet and each host brings to the table his own brand of comedic commentary. Owen is the current host of Shaq’s All-Star Comedy Jam and Godfrey is a voice talent on Cartoon Network's “The Mr. Men Show.”
The show also includes short recorded skits. The show will even include a segment “Shaq Don’t Crack,” in which the comedians play clips and deliver punchlines in hopes of breaking the serious stare of the three-time NBA Finals MVP.
O’Neal said he used his sense of humor as a team leader, keeping teammates loose in the locker room, adding that, while he never clowned on the court, he did believe it was important to express his humor with fans.
“When dads pay their hard-earned money to bring their sons or daughters to games, it was my job to give them a show,” O’Neal said. “Every arena I went to, I wanted to do the same and for them to say, ‘That Shaq fellow is a great player but he’s also a great character. He’s a showman for the people.’”
O’Neal said he came to TruTV with the idea to launch the show, crediting the network with allowing him the creative license to do it his way.
“TruTV does it kind of differently, so it was a good mix,” O’Neal said.
The goal, he says, is to simply relieve folks from stress through laughs.
“It has nothing to do with basketball, but everything to do with sitting down with your family and laughing your butt off—laughing so hard that you might use the bathroom," said O'Neal.
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