“To be honest, I would put myself in the same category as D-Wade. I mean, at the end of the day, the only thing that he has that I don’t have is more wins and two championships. That’s it. As far as playing at the same level? Competing every night? Both ends? Shooting inside and outside? Fast break? Transition? Monta Ellis have it all.”
- Milwaukee’s Monta Ellis comparing himself to Dwayne Wade.

A Quote of the Year (for delusions of grandeur) entry.

“Somebody tell serg Abaka. He aint bout dis life. Next time he run up on me im goin in his mouth. That’s a promise. He doin 2 much.”
- San Antonio’s Stephen Jackson on Twitter, referencing Serge Ibaka (after Serge had a scarp with Metta World Peace). Jackson was subsequently fined 25k for this comment.

“im goin in his mouth”? With what?

“Jack’s a pain in the (butt). Look at him, all he does is twitters. He’s twittering some stuff right now that’ll probably get him fined, and then I’ve got to call the league and talk to the league and say, ‘Yeah, I talked to him.’”
- Spurs’ coach Gregg Popovich on Jackson.

“all he does is twitters”. Gold!

“Without a doubt. I’m on pace to return back to dominance. It’s a matter of becoming 100 percent. When I’m healthy, I feel I’ll be back to my dominant self.”
- New York’s Amar’e Stoudemire.

That’s the last thing the Knicks want to hear. They need to trade this guy, even if it means swallowing a bad contract in return (but for someone who actually fits on the team).

“He has no position. His position is to do whatever he wants. There’s never been anything like it. You just give him the ball and you win the game.”
- An NBA scout on LeBron James.

That’s pretty much the perfect description for LeBron.

“I wouldn’t say I’m a ball hog. I’m a shooter. I don’t necessarily hog the ball, but I put them up though. I definitely much rather shoot it than pass it. That’s just how I am.”
- The Lakers’ Kobe Bryant.

Classic.

“I think when Andre plays with the effort and energy that he’s capable of doing, similar to what we saw two nights ago, he’s a game-changer. He brings length and athleticism and size that we don’t have on our roster.”
- Detroit coach Lawrence Frank on impressive rookie Andre Drummond.

Just start him, for god sake.

“You can’t throw the ball through the nose of a defender and have it come out his a–hole to a teammate.”
- Mavs coach Rick Carlisle offers a unique metaphor for turnovers.

Exactly what I was thinking…..

“I’ve got an easy life right now.”
- OKC’s Kevin Martin on playing with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.

I am reserving judgment on Martin until the playoffs.

“I can still remember them taking a little mallet, and when they would hit me on my left tibia, and ‘I don’t feel anything’ I would tell ‘em. But deep down inside, it was hurting. If what I did was lying and what I did was wrong, at the end of the day, when you have loved ones that have some needs, I did what any of us would have done.”
- Former NBA player Sam Bowie who was selected second overall in the 1984 NBA draft by the Portland Trail Blazers, revealing that his NBA career began with him keeping quiet about how much pain he was in during the days leading up to the draft. FYI – the Chicago Bulls took Michael Jordan with the third pick.

Understandable, but Wow!

“I want to be in Sacramento.”
- Sacramento’s DeMarcus Cousins.

Sure.

“It doesn’t make sense at all. They’re pretty much telling me my services are no longer needed.”
- The Lakers’ Antawn Jamison on his 5 DNP’s (and counting).

Ah, the D’Antoni doghouse. Good luck escaping that.

“This is really messing with my mind. Kids is everything to me! And of course i have 2 of my own in elementary school as well. I can’t imagine it happening to my kids school. I and the rest of the families would be devastated! Something has to be done. Land of the free, BS!”
- Miami’s LeBron James on Twitter after the massacre of school children in Connecticut.

I don’t know what you’re talking about LeBron – shopping for assault rifles and pump action shotguns at Walmart (K-Mart/Big-W/Target equivalent in Auzz) is perfectly normal……

But seriously, well said.

“You only get one shot. People might not ever understand that, but at the end of the day it’s not their life. You can’t let anybody else dictate how they want your life to be. I only have one shot to play and do something that I love. Not everybody is blessed and have an opportunity to do what they love. So I want to do it the best that I can and I’m going to take everything in I can to get what I can out of the NBA. Which, for me, is winning a championship. So if I have to play on another team or do whatever I have to do to get one, that’s my goal. This is my passion, so I’ll continue to fight.”
- The Lakers’ Dwight Howard who can become an unrestricted free agent in July, hinting that if he didn’t think he could win a championship in L.A. he would move on.

Another ‘Dwightmare’? Please no.

“Why should he take me out? Like I said, the more I continue to practice, my free throws are going to fall. But there’s other things you can do on the court to help your team. It’s not just about the free throws.”
- Dwight Howard when asked by a reporter if he should be subbed out of close games because of his free throw shooting.

True, but it would make a huge difference if he could shoot a reasonable percentage.

“Tingling in my legs all the way down to my feet. There’s times when sometimes I really can’t even feel my feet. [The doctors] said that’s going to happen. It takes at least nine months for you to get strength back in your legs and all that stuff. So I’m still in that process.”
- Dwight Howard on the lingering effects of his back procedure.

That’s not good.

“We have very talented players but they are capable of much more. To me, this is totally unacceptable.”

And this:

Were the expectations for this team a little too high? “It is not very high, just championship, not more. We are only human beings.”
- Brooklyn Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov on firing Avery Johnson.

With such outrageous expectations for a flawed roster, this thing’s going to get ugly over the next few years.

“That system [Utah] was a great system for my style of play. I’m a system player. I love Coach Sloan’s system. I loved the offense there. Is it as good as there? No. There’s just more one-on-one and isos [in Johnson's offense].”
- Brooklyn’s Deron Williams referring to the “flex” offense run by former Utah coach Jerry Sloan.

Now, with Avery’s firing, D-Will is starting to look like a ‘coach-killer’.

“I think it’s mostly mental with me. It’s become mental. I’ve tried getting up extra shots, I’ve tried not shooting so I don’t think about it. I tried shooting before games, not shooting before games, so I hopefully I snap out of it.”
- Deron Williams on his deteriorating play over the last few years.

The current version of Deron Williams is nowhere near the player we saw in the 2007 Western Conference Finals. And that’s alarming, considering he’s in his prime.

“That guy has mental issues, man. He’s a talented player, but he has the opportunity to be the face of that franchise, but I don’t think he wants it. He’s immature, man. Big maturity problem. Hopefully he’ll grow up out of it and become great. He definitely has the talent to….I told him, ‘Man, play basketball. You’ve got a chance to be a good player, but when you do stuff like that, you’re like a garbage player. It’s not a sign of being great.’”
- Dallas’ O.J. Mayo on DeMarcus Cousins after the two had an on-court altercation.

Tell us something we don’t know.

“I stopped focusing on it. That was it. I stopped focusing on it. I worry about my mid-range [game], my driving and my free throws, and that’s it. Honestly, I don’t shoot threes before games. I don’t practice threes anymore.”
- Philadelphia’s Evan Turner on his outside shooting.

An interesting tactic.

“I just like to play. Just being able to continue to beat my kids. To make sure they can never kick my butt.”
- Brooklyn’s Jerry Stackhouse on what motivates him to keep playing.

Like his honesty.

“Adam Silver knows exactly where the bodies are buried and like me he buried some of them.”
- NBA Commissioner David Stern on Deputy Commissioner (and Stern’s successor) Adam Silver.

Oooohhhh.

“It was a blur, man. I wasn’t there either, like mentally. The people [in Dallas] are nice. Great fans. Sometimes we make pit stops in some places. I remember the people and the city. Basketball just wasn’t there for me at that time.”
- The Clippers’ Lamar Odom on his time in Dallas last season.

He’s not wrong.

“I get phone calls at all hours of the night from different teammates. And I’ve got to tell them: OK, you didn’t get yours tonight but… So OK, take Serge [Ibaka]. I’ll tell him, “OK man, you got seven points tonight, then you need to go get eight blocks. Some nights it’s not going to be your night, where you can touch the ball. It’s like that on this team, especially when you’ve got scorers like Russ, K.D. and Kevin Martin leading the league in scoring……The game ends, you go home, take an hour break and then I know it’s mentoring time. Guys are gonna call.”
- OKC’s Kendrick Perkins.

Surprising.

“His communication skills toward everybody have been off the charts. We used to call Russ, ‘Trey,’ as in Russell Westbrook III. He would act like a little Trey, where he would go off and no one could talk to him last year. It happened a few times. But there’s been none of that this year. He’s been a great leader.”
- Perkins again, on teammate Russell Westbrook.

Amusing; not sure Russ would agree though.

“When he has the ball in his hands, I’m a much better coach.”
- Minnesota coach Rick Adelman on Ricky Rubio.

The kid is special but you can tell he’s struggling physically at the moment.

“A lot of this will change when Steve comes back.”
- Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni.

They’re placing a big burden on the shoulders of a 38 year old.

“Health is going to be an issue. There’s nothing I can really do about it. It’s arthritis in the knees. Cartilage is missing. That’s not going to regrow itself. Maybe in the future, the next three to five years, there may be something out there that really does help. For right now, it’s a waiting game.”
- The Sixers’ Andrew Bynum.

“Cartilage is missing”? Yowza! Possibly another Brandon Roy-type situation.

“I thought it really helped me a lot obviously at first, because he draws so much attention it’s hard for guys to double team and key on you, so it helped me tremendously. Later, I felt I was able to get the ball more and do more things with the ball, so I could definitely see how it could stunt growth.”
- Bynum on playing with Kobe Bryant.

That’s true; nothing outlandish there.

“Dwight’s a great player, but he’s going to have to get accustomed to playing with Kobe (Bryant) and not touching the ball every single play.”
- Bynum.

Ain’t that the truth.

How much higher can the afro grow? “Oh man, I want it to go forever, man. There’s going to come and point in time where it’s not going to be growing, so I might as well enjoy it while I have it.”
- Bynum.

Please Drew, grow it forever.

“I don’t know what he’s doing with that perm, but I guess he’s a trendsetter.”
- Kobe Bryant on Bynum’s hair.

Says the guy who wears fur and dresses up like this.

“He’s a bad man … he’s healthy, and I’ll take him matching up against any point guard in this league.”
- Warriors’ coach Mark Jackson on Steph Curry.

He has been impressive; let’s hope the ankle holds up.

“It’s herringbone, which is crazy. In fact, the NBA fought me on it. They said if it gets shot on TV, the lines will mess up the screen. I’m like, this ain’t 1988—we’ve got HD. We ended up taking it to the old arena in New Jersey to test it.”
- Nets’ minority owner Jay Z on their home court.

I like the look.

“I’m looking forward to play in Puerto Rico. I want to have a big impact and win the league. I want to build a dynasty.”
- Former New York Knick and Denver Nugget Renaldo Balkmann on Twitter, after signing to play for a team in Puerto Rico. Just a few weeks later Renaldo signed with a team in the Philippines.

He’s fallen far.

“I can pass easily, but I’m such a dominant scorer that people think I can’t pass. They got to start watching the game.”
- Washington’s Jordan Crawford.

A “dominant scorer”? That’s a bit much.

“If (owner Donald) Sterling sold the team they might be able to.”
- Current Mav and former Clipper Chris Kaman when asked if the Clippers can turn the corner.

I tend to agree, in terms of them being legit title contenders year in and year out.

“I’m looking for the statistician around here. When I find out what he looks like, we’re gonna have some problems.”
- Boston’s Kevin Garnett after recording no rebounds in a win over Philly.

Replays showed that he did in fact have no rebounds in the game.

“We are pretty much the worst team in the NBA.”
- Toronto’s Andrea Bargnani.

Truth teller.

“If I wanted to, I could lead the league in scoring, but that’s not my job here.”
- LeBron James.

True.

“He could average 37 points a game, realistically I think.”
- Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra on LeBron.

Also True.

“I don’t know who labels people stars, but even [T'wolves owner] Glen Taylor said: I don’t think Kevin Love is a star, because he hasn’t led us to the playoffs. I mean, it’s not like I had much support out there. That’s a tough pill to swallow….

You walk into the locker room every year, and it’s completely turned over. There’s new guys everywhere. And then it happens again and again. You start to wonder: Is there really a plan here? Is there really any kind of a … plan?…

It was a projection over a sure thing [not giving him a five-year max extension, and withholding it for Rubio]. There’s no question there was an agenda here. A different agenda…..

I have a very, very good memory, and I always remember the people who have done right by me, and the people who have done wrong by me. It will be embedded in my brain, and something I won’t forget about. There’s no telling what will happen. I would love to compete for a championship in Minnesota, but …

I haven’t been in the playoffs yet. I’m looking at my contract in the eye of two years from now, and if I haven’t been to the playoffs – or it’s been one playoff berth – well, it’s going to be tough to say, ‘Oh well, I’m going to stay here and continue to rebuild.’

Look at different teams around the league. Look at a San Antonio that continues to add talent around [Tim] Duncan and [Manu] Ginobili and [Tony] Parker. Look at what happens in Oklahoma City, the players they continue to add around their star players. Even the trade they had where they lost [James] Harden, they still added players that were going to fit well in their system. And speaking of small markets, look at a team like Memphis and all they’ve been able to accomplish. They’re getting the most out of their entire organization.”
- Minnesota’s Kevin Love.

Goner.

Weird question, but to battle like that … was it fun at all? “When I hit that fan, I definitely enjoyed it — until that fine came down. That $3 million I lost killed me. It brought me back to reality because I could have lost my job. It was wild because it had never been done before. And it will never happen again so, yeah, adrenaline was flowing. How many people can say that they’ve punched a fan? Do you know all the stuff that they say to us? The racist stuff they say to us? We get the N-word and people talking about our wives and family. Just because we make a lot of money we’re supposed to be the bigger person? Fans tell us that our kids are ugly and that they should have thrown our mothers in jail for having us. That’s not disrespectful? I’ve been in a lot of fights and done some things I shouldn’t have done, but I’ve never sold drugs or been locked up, so for people to think that way about me isn’t right. They had life-size posters of me in Utah with me behind bars. Before the situation with Jamaal Tinsley, I had never been in jail, and I’m from the projects!”
- Stephen Jackson on the Malice at the Palace.

This guy has no filter.

“Last week while practicing, I suffered a setback in my recovery. I’ve felt better since the recent surgery, but I am not all the way better. The past two days I have been weighing all of my options as I try to continue my basketball career. I have decided to explore additional treatment options and an extensive rehabilitation plan. My goal has been, and continues to be, to return to the basketball.”
- Minnesota’s Brandon Roy after another knee related setback last week.

Please Brandon, just stop.


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