Video: Shaq used a bad word on ‘Inside the NBA’

Eric Freeman

Warning: As the headline says, this video includes a bad word.

Being a national basketball analyst is difficult, if talking on television for a living could ever be described as such. These former athletes, and sometimes highly paid writers, must speak clearly, intelligently, and in a way that doesn't offend more than a small portion of the audience. There are many people to please, and few ways to please them.

However, some rules are fairly basic. For one thing, announcers aren't supposed to swear on air. So it was a bad Thursday night for TNT "Inside the NBA" analyst Shaquille O'Neal, who used the s-word when he thought they'd already gone to commercial during the night's pregame show. It was an honest mistake, but nonetheless an embarrassing moment for a guy who's only been talking on TV professionally for a few weeks. Considering early returns on his performance haven't been great, it was even worse.

The good news is that TNT characteristically managed to have a little fun with the moment. At halftime of the Grizzlies/Knicks game that kicked off the doubleheader, Shaq stuffed a bar of soap in his mouth to wash out all the bad words. The game announcers made some jokes, too, including a few pieces of industry jargon that I'd honestly never heard before. Who knew the broadcast would be so educational?

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