League legend Dean Lonergan’s son Liam will join the cast of TVNZ2’s controversial reality show Heartbreak Island tomorrow night.
Spy hears that if some of his exploits make the edit, jaws will drop.
The 22-year-old almost followed his dad’s footsteps into league, but instead works alongside him at Duco Events in Brisbane, Auckland and Las Vegas.
The father-and-son team are very close. Liam is great mates with Kiwi ex-Heavyweight World Boxing champion Joseph Parker — who is managed by Duco Events — and with top-ranked Aussie boxer Jeff Horn.
Liam says those close to him support his joining the cast of Heartbreak Island, but the young hunk says reactions — including from his proud dad — will be interesting once his reality TV debut airs.
“I think he is preparing himself to be on damage control if the shit hits the fan, and believe me, it does. The contestants’ debauchery and the scandal do nothing but increase.
“I have no regrets from the show and no complaints — if I didn’t want certain material on TV I wouldn’t have gone on TV. In this business, you stick to your guns and do what is right for you. People’s opinion of me is none of my business. My family have been warned and briefed of any behaviour that might offend them. However, my family are close to unoffendable and have put up with me for 22 years; I doubt there will be any surprises for them.”
He says Parker “can’t wait to watch”.
On his Heartbreak Island arrival Liam said it's Josh Connolly who takes him under his wing, and Ruby Mills — whom he describes as marriage material — tells him that if he is on the show for love, he will lose. At the time he was stumped by her comment, but now he has seen the episodes on TV, he can understand her cynicism.
“I had to disrupt the balance that had settled in, otherwise my time on the island would be short!”
Also disrupting the island tomorrow night are model and actress Caitlin Smith, 23, (whom Spy revealed was on the island in January), retail worker Candace Kiernan, 22, and personal trainer Ben Evans, 26.
Liam previously had a chance at a career in modelling when he was scouted by IMG models.
When the opportunity to appear on the show arose, Liam — who has spent his life near the spotlight watching sports stars handle the attention — wanted to see how he could handle it.
“I wanted to understand why 99 per cent of professional athletes spit drivel down the lens of a camera. I wanted to prove to myself that I had the finesse to be on TV, and I wanted to prove that this business can be done right.”