A colleague was relating to me the locker room scene after the Piston’s 2009 dismissal by the Cavs in the first round. In a locker room of apathetic, disaffected malcontents, Antonio McDyess was devastated. His best chance at a championship down the drain. “Dyess” could barely speak to reporters, but said he wasn’t sure if he’d be coming back. Turns out, he did come back. He returned to the NBA with the Spurs for another championship run, another run that fell short as the previous ones had.
Now, at age 36, and with the Spurs vying for one last desperate shot at the ring, McDyess says this is it for him. Dyess, from the San Antonio Express-News:
“I didn’t know what to expect when they signed me (in 2009), and I’m glad to be back,” McDyess said, “but I think this is it. I’m the oldest player (on the Spurs) now, and I feel like it. I’m not trying to see any more years. I’m pretty sure this is it.”
Notice the joke in there about being the oldest player on the Spurs, a team always considered to be pretty old to begin with. McDyess has helped teams win year in and year out, but has wound up only being a year too late (Phoenix, Detroit, San Antonio). Careers are rarely just. Still, it would be nice to see McDyess get to go out with a ring on top. He’s been around long enough.
Hassan Whiteside recorded a triple-double last night against the Hornets, and his tenth block was particularly impressive. He didn’t so much block Marvin Williams‘ layup attempt as pluck it out of the air with one hand. It almost looks like it should count as a block, rebound and steal at the same time.
The NBA world has taken notice of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. In Thursday night’s home game against the Knicks on TNT, Pistons players wore warmup shirts that read “FLINT NOW,” and the organization announced a $500,000 donation towards providing clean water for residents of the town.
Former Pistons great and general basketball legend Rasheed Wallace went even further, according to a tweet from his alma mater, the University of North Carolina:
Sheed obviously has a connection to Michigan, having played in Detroit for six years (including on the 2004 title team) and serving as an assistant coach for the Pistons during the 2013-14 season. This was an incredible gesture by him for the residents of a town that has been without drinkable water for a long time.
The Kings are a complete mess right now. After a loss to the Nets on Friday night, the team is reportedly considering firing head coach George Karl, who has been with the team for just about one year, and DeMarcus Cousins says they have “a bigger issue than the players.”
But, on the bright side, Cousins is still a monster on the court. During the Nets loss, he posted a triple-double with 24 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, showing why he’s the one thing about this franchise that is going to be worth talking about long-term.
Russell Westbrook has been wearing the new Air Jordan XXX on the court for nearly a month now. Considering he’s averaging a triple-double in his last 10 games — 22 points, 12 assists, 10 rebounds — I’d say he’s pretty comfortable in them.
Continuing a trend of using the respected Jordan brand name with modern players to sell the shoes, this latest ad for the Air Jordan XXX shoes features a young hypeman who describes Westbrook as “the new Big Bang,” and asks people to “make room – as the man is about to take off.”
The Air Jordan XXX hit retail stores on Feb. 12. Westbrook will be wearing them next weekend in Toronto for the All-Star Game.