Royce Reed is a polarizing figure. At this point in the evolution of Basketball Wives, she’s only true friends with Tami, her friendship with Suzie is hanging on by a thread and, when we spoke to Jennifer and Evelyn, they all told me that they didn’t actually plan to acknowledge Royce during the reunion. (Hence all the “Did you hear something?” remarks they made whenever Royce spoke on stage.) But Royce couldn’t care less what those ladies think and admits that she tried to play nice during season one of the show, but over time, she learned that the only way to deal with the other ladies was to speak her mind. “I don’t deal with the fake friendships,” Royce told me. “I need a true friendship where we can express our true opinions and be okay with that.”
There were several episodes that you weren’t in this season, do you wish you could have been in more, or were you happy to be away from the drama?
I was happy to be away from the drama, but as far as being on the show, of course you want your air time but I still had my air time even though you didn’t see me because my name was mentioned, and that’s all that matters.
Do you think if there is another season, are you still interested in doing the show if there is another season?
I mean I’m gonna ride it until the wheels fall off for me, but I know that this show isn’t the end of me. I have a lot going on for myself so I can hold my own.
What’s going on with the Eric movie?
I actually haven’t heard anything, I told him to send me the script and I would read it, and if I felt like it was a good move for me and my publicist/manager felt the same way then I would do it, but I haven’t received a script yet. But I told him that send me the script and ill read it and if it’s a good look then I’ll do it, if not keep it moving, I mean, no hard feelings.
Have you talked to him at all beyond that, socially?
I don’t understand Jen’s issue because she assumes things were more than they are…it was really strictly business.
Does it hurt to hear Jennifer always say you’re sleeping with everyone you date?
It doesn’t hurt my feelings because I know it’s not true and also its coming from Jen. She really is not relevant in my life. It would be different if it was coming from a true friend or a family member maybe I would feel that way, but coming from Jen I know that half the stuff that comes out of her mouth is somebody else’s opinion, it’s not her own, and on top of that she just likes to say stuff to start rumors versus it being true or not.
What’s your current situation with Bryan?
We’re still dating, we’re not in that exclusive phase, I wanna make sure that when I settle down the next time it’s something that I really want to do and its with someone that I really see myself with. I do need to date, but me dating doesn’t mean I’m sleeping with every guy I date, and I think that’s where they get misconstrued, because in their lives that’s what they might do, but I wasn’t raised that way, so for me dating is dating.
At the last reunion you annoyed the other women, so what do you say to them saying your acting crazy then and that’s why they were ?
I couldn’t care less what they have to say because I started sticking up for myself and that’s what they don’t respect, they wanted me to continue to let them talk to me all sorts of sideways and I’m not gonna let that happen, when you met me season one I had just met them I was coming into my own, season two I was really starting to show who Royce really was and standing up for myself, and now I just don’t give a damn. But again I don’t deal with the fake friendships, I’m used to being around people who tell me no, tell me yes, tell me when I’m being a bitch and tell me when I’m not, tell me when I’m right tell me when I’m wrong. That’s what a true friendship is to me, I don’t need a alpha female, I need a true friendship where we can express our true opinions and be okay with that.
I get that you and Tami can be real and honest with each other, but looking at it from the outside, it’s weird that you don’t get along with Evelyn because she’s just as open and honest —
No, she’s not..
You don’t think so?
No, because Tami is gonna say what she feels, and she’s gonna stand by it, and her opinion makes sense. Evelyn she doesn’t really know the English vocabulary too well because all her sentences end in the word “bitch,” and she is making t-shirts that degrade another human being, I cant really respect someone who actually thinks that’s an intelligent move, all money is not good money to me. So I would never put them in the same category. Now do they both like drama? We’re on a reality show, but yes, to a certain extent we know what we signed up for. But I would never say that they have the same personality or are in the same boat or anything like that because I don’t think they are.
What’s your current situation with Meeka?
There’s not love, there’s not hate. I believe I told Meeka herself, I believe the way that you came in, you looked very thirsty and it’s gonna come back and bite you. I never told her to pick sides, I told her to make her own opinion and base it off of that. I didn’t owe her anything, I owed her respect and I deserved the same thing. But I think she got what was coming for her, I’ll put it that way.
Will you talk a little bit about your career outside of the show?
Like I stated before, I don’t need this show to survive. I don’t need to be friends with Shaunie in order to survive, she doesn’t own the air. In terms of everything that Royce is doing, I can hold my own. I have a book that’s out; I have a children’s series that’s coming out at the end of the year, we’re working on doing a fitness video, and I’m working on a stage play that’s gonna start touring, we already did one city, I’m gonna go on a book tour, I’m gonna go on a lot of auditions, and outside of that, I’m a mom first. I have a lot of stuff that is going for me where I can make a name for myself outside of Basketball Wives.
Is it hard to do the show, and portray yourself like this is my reality and not have your son on it?
Yeah it sucks for me, that’s one of the main things that gets to me at times, and a lot of people don’t know I’m a mom and he is my heart, I’m a mom first I’m with him almost all day every day. I spoil him almost to an extent that my parents don’t like. That’s my heart and everything I do, I think about if he is going to be proud of his mother. I will never sit on my behind and wait for a check each month. I’m gonna be on my grind and be on my hustle, and let him wake up and see his mom making something of herself, so he’s not just saying oh my daddy is this, well guess what my mommy is this.
So if you ever did decide I’m gonna leave this all behind, what would you take away from doing the show?
Well after this show is done I’m gonna either have a show of my own, or your definitely gonna see me in the lights but my major was theatre arts and I’m very good at it, not to toot my own horn but toot toot! I’m a actress first. Outside of that I’m extremely intelligent and I can always hold my own and I don’t need to be sitting around drinking and talking about another person. I can be enhancing my own career. So again when this show is over and done with, I plan on doing movies, I plan on going to auditions, and becoming part of a legacy. So I just want to make sure when I look back five or six years from now and I see this show and I’m like “Man, look where I started and look where I am now.” It’s definitely not gonna be the end of me. I have too much to show the world, too much talent, I don’t want to just give it up because of Basketball Wives.
So when you’re watching scenes that you weren’t in, like when Tami and Meeka or Evelyn and Tami were fighting, what do you think of the way they are handling their situations?
Well I always say I’m a lover not a fighter but I will fight for what I love. When it comes to family and at times when it comes to friendships I know your emotions can get the best of you. The situation I had with Evelyn, I didn’t go in with the preconceived notion that I was going to fight, but I had to defend myself, I wish it wasn’t taken that far, but I’m not gonna let anybody punk me. I know there are other ways to handle yourself but again when your vocabulary isn’t really that extensive, the only thing that you can do is lash out in that type of way. Dealing with Evelyn, it’s “bitch bitch bitch bitch” or she’s throwing something. I tend to have a more vast vocabulary so I can get personal with my words, my vocabulary, but she cant necessarily do that.
Did you expect that to happen with her, did you expect the drink to fly?
I didn’t expect it, but it definitely didn’t shock me. But I have fast reflexes; I’m a dancer, and a former competitive cheerleader, so obviously being thrown in the air you know that you have to get caught. I kinda saw her in the corner of my eye getting ready to do something, so I said let me dodge this. I always say I’m not ghetto but I’m hood, what I mean by that is I can speak very well, I’m very intelligent I have my degree but I’m street smart. So I’m always prepared.
What do you think about Meeka filing a suit against Tami?
Tami is my girl but I have to see it, I haven’t seen that fight I haven’t seen what led up to it. I know there are times when people can say things to you that just trigger you. So as far as her filing the lawsuit I mean if that’s what she feels like she needs to do, then that’s Meeka. There’s still people that think I should file a lawsuit against Evelyn but for me she missed, if she had landed I probably would have kicked her ass and still filed a lawsuit..that’s neither here or there.
I know Tami said if Meeka is on the show next season she won’t be on it, do you feel the same way?
There’s nobody that’s gonna take money out of my pocket…I’m gonna stick to my opinions and I’m gonna say what I have to say and what I feel. Nobody is gonna make me sell my soul, nobody is gonna make me be someone I’m not just so I can fit in to their bitter-ass circle, if I’m on next season I’m gonna be in it. Who they have me filming with, I’m still gonna be Royce, what you see is what you get. If I do another season I hope they show exactly who I am in terms of what I’m doing in real life, versus me just fighting with people or arguing with people, ’cause I think even as a whole we are a lot more than that, if that’s what they want to show then I don’t know.
Outside of the women that are on the show, do you know other wives other girlfriends and what is their reaction to the show?
I do know some other wives and other girlfriends and ex girlfriends their reaction to the show is bittersweet, some of them love it some of them love it just as entertainment. The others are like that’s not how this lifestyle really is and you have those who are like y’all are putting all the business out there. When they speak to me they are like you know what Royce I respect you ’cause you never changed who you were, you never really been into all the glitz and the glamour but you have a bank account. The fact that you can hold your own against these women who have such strong personalities I respect the fact that you’re still Royce. I’m gonna be me 100 percent of the time.