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From KT Tape's Kerri Walsh on playing Shaq in the ABC show "Shaq Vs":
So many people have tried to get me to trash talk Shaq, and yeah, I've had some little jabs here and there. But basically I just wanted to kill him with kindness, then get out there and kill it in the sand. Let's get this straight: Shaq is a great guy, and a great athlete. He's had an amazing career, and is still out there busting his butt on the court.
Okay, now that's out of the way, I'll give you the rundown on the whole "Shaq Vs." experience.
So, to set the stage, ABC shot the episode of Shaq Vs. at Hermosa Beach, California, immediately after the AVP tournament there was over. Rachel and I ended up fifth place in that tournament. No thank you. We wanted to win and it didn't happen, so we were super bummed. We're both back in competition mode after each having baby boys, and even though we know it's an accomplishment to even be back on the sand at this point, it's no secret that Rachel and I are not entirely happy with anything but first place. I will always want another championship, another accomplishment, and I know it's in us to be on top. We're going to keep pushing until we're where we want to be, and then we're not going to let up!
So it was really great to be able to play Shaq because it just lightened the atmosphere and was super silly and fun. And of course, I got to be reunited with Misty! I love that girl! The magic is still there. She's taking the season to recover from her Achilles injury and even though she's hurt, she was out there ready to put on a show, and so was I. Not only did she hammer some huge hits, she even showed off a few of her "Dancing with the Stars" moves on the court. I think that show might have ended VERY differently if she hadn't messed up her Achilles. I was wearing KT Tape, so I was feeling no pain from my shoulder. And I think the tape intimidated Shaq a bit.
We started playing, and seriously, Shaq was cracking me up. He was doing this hilarious over-the-head sideways swipe that looked like a basketball hook shot. What is that!? I'm going to name that move the "V-ball Shaq Attack". It wasn't super effective, but it did make me laugh. Overall, his form wasn't bad. He was setting and serving alright, considering he had one week to train for this. But he needs some work on the whole team dynamic. He kept jumping in front of his partner, men's gold medalist Todd Rogers.
Then, once when I went up to the net to try to block against Shaq's hit, he came crashing right into me through the net. I'm 6'3", but he is BIG BIG BIG, especially when he's coming right for you. I hit the deck, and the crowed started booing Shaq because I had a face full of sand. I know he didn't do it on purpose, but it scared the living daylights out of me!
So then they tried to psyche me out, and brought in my hubby, Casey, to sub for Todd. Nice try, but I have no problem going head to head with him on the court. Casey put Shaq on defense. That didn't work so well, either. I usually don't kiss my opponents, but I made an exception in this case (and I'm not talking about Shaq!)
The crowd was great, and I have to say, even though Misty and I obviously had home court advantage, the fans were good to Shaq, too. But alas, the big guy took a fall in the end, and fell hard! We owned the guys! The best part -- Shaq wearing a pink mankini! Work it, big guy! What a crack-up. He was a really good sport, and I think he probably realized all along that he was going to end up strutting his stuff on the beach. He should have gotten some of the pink KT Tape to match his teeny tiny swimsuit, haha! Maybe then he would have had a chance against the girls (or not).
I also want to send out a sincere "Thank You" to all of my fans out there. You've made it easier for me to get back out here so quickly and do what I love. I love being a mommy, and I'm thrilled that I'm able to keep my career going as well. I'm one lucky gal. So thanks everyone for the support, and thanks to Shaq for making me smile and getting Misty and me back together on the court (even for just one match)!
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