“The way I’m understanding it is that it was her choice to leave,” said DioGuardi early Friday on Ryan Seacrest’s daily KIIS radio program. “I never was here to replace her. It would be impossible to replace Paula Abdul. She’s an incredible talent. She is somebody who helped make the show as big as it is. How could you ever replace that?”
DioGuardi was still trying to digest the three-day-old news that Abdul had decided to quit ‘American Idol’ after being unable to come to terms on a new contract.
“I can’t get over it. I’m completely shocked,” she said. “It’s such a loss for the show, such a loss for the contestants. She’s definitely the heart of the panel.”
“The kind of heart she treated the contestants with she treated me with last year,” said DioGuardi, who said Abdul helped her through her nervousness about joining the show last season. “She was so kind to me and made me feel immediately like part of the panel.”
It’s hard to tell whether Abdul is reeling from her decision or celebrating the outpouring of love from fans and reported offers from other networks.
“At this point, there are so many wonderful things that are being offered to me,” Abdul told the Associated Press Thursday. “And I got to take a deep breath, sleep a little … and go through everything.”