Credit: Sonja Flemming/CBS
Big Brother

The longest season in Big Brother history came to a close Wednesday night, and it ended with a bang as Nicole and Paul battled it out for the half-million-dollar prize. In the end, it came down to a single vote, and a vote that eventual winner Nicole Franzel never thought she’d get: Da’Vonne. (Paul didn’t think she’d get it either.)

The newly crowned champion called into Entertainment Weekly Radio (SiriusXM, channel 105) this morning and you can now hear the entire interview —as well as our chats with Paul and James — on the EW Morning Live Podcast below. Here are a few highlights from conversation with Niclole.

On if she would have brought Paul or James to the end with her:

“People will argue this with me, but I would have taken Paul because he convinced me to take him, and my slogan going into the house was to be the best, you have to beat the best. And if I lost to Paul I’d be completely okay with it because I think he played a terrific game…. My heart wanted to take Paul but my head wanted to take James. I just didn’t know what to follow, and I definitely would have ended up following my heart at that point. He deserved it way too much to let him go at third.”

On the one vote that shocked her:

“I never thought I would have had [Da’Vonne’s] vote no matter who I was sitting next to. I was very shocked about that and it’s just crazy that it actually came down to that.”

On what she was thinking after Paul gave his final speech:

“I said, ‘Oh, crap. That was really good.’ He nailed it…. When it comes to standing and speaking, I can’t do it. It just stinks because I’m not great at it. And I was little intimated by the fact that he went first and that kind of threw me off. It was very intimidating and it worked. I think that’s what he wanted to do. He had been practicing that thing for over a week, using the microwave to time him. He had that on lock.”

On how she played differently the second time:

“I had to play strategically and not emotionally. That was the only different thing that I did. Everyone saw my game and knew how I played, and season 16 was the season that everyone happened to see who was in the house. So everyone saw my game so I’m just kind of surprised that I did make it so far.”

On what caused her to kick it into another gear after a slow start:

“Natalie should have put Corey and I up and I realized, holy crap, I actually convinced her to do that. I need to take advantage of this and roll with it.”

On her future with Cory:

“We think very highly of each other, and at the very least we will definitely stay good friends for life. We formed a bond that was insane and it was almost instant, so I definitely think we’re meant to at least be in each other’s lives in some way or another.”

On what’s she going to do with the money:

“I need to get a financial advisor, apparently, but after that I am definitely treating my family to a vacation. So I want to take them somewhere nice and relax for a little bit.”

On if she would play a third time:

“I could never turn it down, I don’t think. I’m a die hard fan!”

You can listen to the entire interview and entire podcast — including our chats with Paul and James — below. Or, since we’re on iTunes, you can subscribe for free and take the podcast with you. To send a question to the EW Morning Live Podcast team, follow us on Twitter @EWMLPodcast. And to hear more interviews and pop-culture discussion and debate, check out Entertainment Weekly Radio on SiriusXM, channel 105.

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Big Brother
Big Brother

Julie Chen hosts as the houseguests battle it out.

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