If he thought it was a joke, it wasn’t funny. Former NBA star Amar’e Stoudemire, now playing in Israel, said this to a reporter to a question about a potential gay teammate.
“I’m going to shower across the street. Make sure my change of clothes are around the corner. And I’m going to drive … take a different route to the gym.”
Was he joking?
“I mean, there’s always a truth within a joke.”
That is not a joke, it’s homophobic. It’s sad. It’s also the height of arrogance to assume a gay teammate would be interested in someone so narrow-minded and backwards.
Jason Collins played 13 NBA seasons, was about as respected a teammate as you could find in the league, and he came out publicly as a gay man near the end of that run. He tweeted this.
Former NBA player John Amaechi, who came out after his playing days, was far more direct.
Good on Collins and Amaechi, these kinds of comments need to be met head on, they are simply unacceptable.
The signings will come quickly over the next few days.
Andrew Bogut will ink a deal with the Cavaliers.
Brandon Jennings will sign on to be the Wizards’ reserve point guard.
Jose Calderon will sign on with the Warriors, as the two sides previously agreed to, but then will almost instantly be waived so Golden State can sign Matt Barnes to fill in while Kevin Durant is out.
Those guys are among a number of players who officially cleared waivers Wednesday, reports Marc Stein of ESPN.
All of this requires other moves. Such as the Wizards clearing out a roster spot to sign Jennings.
The Wizards will need to clear out a roster spot as well, and reports are it will not be Trey Burke as had been speculated.
As for what happens to Calderon, keep an eye on Atlanta.
If Kevin Durant is back and fully healthy by the second round of the playoffs, then the Warriors will be in the same position they are now — favorites to win the NBA title.
But in the interim, can Golden State hold off the Spurs and keep the No. 1 seed? What needs to go right for the Warriors for that to happen?
I get into all of that and more in this latest PBT Extra on the fallout of the fallout from the Kevin Durant injury.
Kevin Durant is going to miss at least a month, likely more time, with a grade 2 MCL sprain and a bone bruise in his left knee after Zaza Pachulia fell into it during the opening minutes of a game against the Wizards Tuesday.
It leads to questions: Can the Warriors hold on to the No. 1 seed in the West? And will Durant be right for the playoffs?
Myself and Dane Carbaugh of NBC Sports tackle these questions, plus your questions from Twitter in this latest PBT Extra. We get into the importance of off-court chemistry between players, where would Ben Simmons go in this draft, and how to accurately judge a hamburger. Yes, you got that last part right, we talk burgers.
As always, you can check out the podcast below, or listen and subscribe via iTunes (check there to see all the NBC Sports podcasts), subscribe via the fantastic Stitcher app, check us out on Google play, or check out our new PBT podcast homepage and archive at Audioboom.com.
Is playing in 31 games enough to win Rookie of the Year?
That’s the question buzzing around the NBA after Philadelphia made official what a lot of people expected: Joel Embiid is being shut down for the rest of the season to let his knee heal. An MRI Monday led to the decision, according to the team.
“The assessment of Monday’s follow-up MRI of Joel Embiid’s left knee appears to reveal that the area affected by the bone bruise has improved significantly, while the previously identified meniscus tear appears more pronounced in this most recent scan,” said Sixers Chief Medical Director Dr. Jonathan Glashow in a statement released by the team. “We will continue to work with leading specialists to gather additional information through clinical examination and sequential testing to determine the best course of action and next steps.”
Embiid averaged 20.2 points and 7.8 rebounds per game despite a minutes restriction all season. He was incredibly efficient in getting his numbers — he had an All-Star level PER of 24.2 — and when he was on the court the Sixers outscored their opponents by three points per 100 possessions. He was clear and away the best rookie when he played, with the Bucks’ Malcolm Brogdon and the Nugget’s Jamal Murray a distant second and third.
Still, just 31 games. The fewest games a Rookie of the Year has played in up to this point is 50 by Patrick Ewing.
Talking to voters, I get the sense Embiid is still the frontrunner for the award and may well win. Marc Stein of ESPN summed it up well.