After JaVale McGee came out and undermined the players by doing the one thing you absolutely cannot do in a lockout, give the other side any hope that you’re considering breaking (no matter how rational, reasonable, or predictable that is), the players acted stunned. “What? JaVale who? Who is that? The McGee boy, you say?” as if it was completely out of left field. They didn’t want to respond to it. Of course they did, because, well, they were pretty mad that McGee had done such a stupid thing.
But all that feigned ignorance? Yeah, not so much. From Sports Illustrated:
A union source said players learned of the comment via Twitter during the meeting and “were furious,” and it surprised no one when the message coming out was even heavier than usual on all the resolve and unity rhetoric. They all denied McGee had a clue when it came to representing the masses, then went to work explaining why this strategy isn’t nearly as futile as so many of us believe it to be.
Can you imagine being in that meeting?
“Uh… guys… guys… guys!”
“What, what is it (role player)?”
“Uh… JaVale apparently told reporters that some of us are ready to quit.”
“No. No he didn’t. I TOLD YOU TO MUZZLE HIM, (sub-superstar)! I TOLD YOU TO TAKE HIM OUT THE BACK ENTRANCE OR THROUGH THE SEWER.”
The odds are that JaVale will not be asked to attend the next meeting, or if he is, he needs to bring help. Ironic that JaVale McGee now needs a help defender.