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This episode of the Bill Simmons podcast is presented by quick books. Small business owners go all in on their passion. Sell the car of your dreams for a food truck. It's because you're hoping to make the best burger. Whatever your dream cookbook suite of tools can help you get there into it. Quick books help small businesses be more successful. Learn more at cookbooks. Dotcom. We're also brought to you by the Ringer Dotcom and the Ringer Podcast Network. If you didn't know we did new watchable Monday night Sleeping with the enemy made Van Lathan's.
Then we have another one coming up on Wednesday.
Coming to America about a month before the new one comes out being ventilated and Wesley Morris broke it down. So to re watchable this week populace into our new sports cards podcast. Sports cards nonsense. The industry has gone bonkers and our host Gia and Jessi are breaking it down twice a week. Sports nonsense coming up. Charles Barkley, he hasn't been on in a long time. I don't know what took what took so long for me to invite him, but I'm glad he was here.
It's a great conversation. We hit just about every NBA topic imaginable. It's on the first Pearl Jam.
All right, the pride of Leeds, Alabama, is here, Charles Barkley. Good to see you. You look happy and healthy.
I'm happy to help the man. Thanks for having me. Lots of basketball stuff going on. Let's let's start here. This is fresh. This is hot off the press. Draymond Green last night did this whole rant about the Cavaliers basically not resting Andre Drummond as much is just not playing them until they figure out a trade for him and he was working out for the game. Then he goes in the back and Draymond did this whole double standard thing about organizations, what's best for them.
But then when a player does what's best for the player, everyone gets mad at the player. Why do we have this double standard? Did you follow that? And what did you think of that whole rant? Well, I think drayman that's a really be careful, all that stuff is cute when you're winning, but were you in last place? It's annoying. They're trying to protect their assets and they're going to trade him. So you don't want a guy making 30 million dollars on your account.
If he gets hurt for the next couple of years or so and doing what's best for them. But I think Draymond has got to start learning to understand. You can say what you want to when you're the champs in first place or even the last place, you become the guy who becomes annoying. Right.
But at the same time, of all the guys, this generation, he's the one that most reminds me of you 30 years ago without spoken, you were I mean, it's probably something you would have done 30 years ago.
But I think the difference between me as he was, he's on a really good team. I was a great player. There was a double standard on that, you say, and do what you want to do. When you want a good team, you can say and do what you want to do. But when you in last place, you have to stand down. He hasn't learned yet.
Interesting. Well, you do TV with him. And so you guys have I think it seems like a complicated but fun relationship. Right. You respect each other, but you go at each other.
No, I said some things about him. I think that sometimes you don't appreciate the guys you play with. He's a good player. I like him as a person. But, you know, I think sometimes he starts to think that he is a great, great player. So that's all the time we disagree. But he's a nice kid and I like him.
When you think about how certain players are treated these days when they do stuff like either quit on their team or try to maneuver how to jump team, stuff like that, like what we saw with Hart in the beginning of this season compared to when it happened in your era, when guys were unhappy and trying to get their way out. What's the biggest difference between your error and now?
Guys never want to get out in my day job, but you got paid a lot of work to get paid today. You got a lot of money to play. You just do your job. And if if they treat you, they do. But they don't. You didn't. You didn't. I don't remember any guys in my day forcing their way out of a situation. Reggie Miller stayed in Indiana, Dominique Wilkins stay in Atlanta. Michael Jordan didn't win for a long time.
He didn't say, hey, I can't beat the Pistons. He got better as a player with captainship like eighth year in the league. That's what's really funny about these guys today. If they don't win a championship in, like, the first three or four years, like, well, I need some help. I'm like, well, everybody needs some help, but it's just a double. It's a difference. I don't see Michael Jordan with his first job was he was twenty eight years old.
It's eighth year in the league. But you never heard him complain. You saw that documentary. He's like, I got to get better. I got to get better. I got to get better. So I think that's the biggest difference.
Well, think about thirty years ago, right? The two guys who I think we're in kind of the worst basketball situations for what their talent was were you and Hakeem and Hakeem.
And there was one point, I think heading into the ninety three season, he had that awesome run with ninety three. He was an MVP candidate. The ninety four ninety five wins, but in ninety two he was unhappy. He didn't have any help. There was rumors they might trade him. You're in the same situation with Philly. Your team wasn't bad, but the league was awesome back then. So you have Hersey, Hawkins, Dawkins basically nobody at center and you're forty four win team but you would have stayed.
The reasons you got traded had nothing to do with you wanting to get out of there was there was other shit going on. Right.
Well I think the main thing man, I have an obligation to the fans. You know, I think you have more obligation to the fans than you do to the team. I mean, you never really see the owner. You see the coaches and the players and the fans. So no matter where I played, I felt a special obligation for the fans to give them the best that I could. But I mean, look, first of all, I mean, if every star all play together, why are we have the league?
I mean, I'd say, you know, there that was a difference, like putting you in a good position to say, I want to get out of New York. You didn't play with a lot of great players. You know, Reggie Miller, I think it's fair to say he didn't play with a great player dominating with the same thing. I'm trying to think, you know, Ralph Sampson is probably, you know, he got that's probably the closer came came to playing with a great player and doing it early in his career.
Yeah. He Drexler Jackson of the second season. But it was a little bit of a different Drexler. It was probably eighty five percent what he used to be.
I mean, Gary Payton was a great player. He had Shawn Kemp. So listen, hey, we all want to win, but at what cost? And to me, I felt a special obligation to those fans in Philadelphia. And I was going to give them everything I had every night and we didn't win, we didn't win, right. Well, what do you think happened when you look back, why did you get traded? Was it some of the off the court stuff like the incident with the fan?
Did you feel like the media was against you? What were the reasons that led to them basically giving you away for 40 cents on the dollar? Because that trade is crazy to look back on now?
Well, they got four players. I mean, that's fair. Got four guys for me.
So you are the best five players of the league. Yeah, but they got four players. First of all, was their fault for making bad trades and not drafted. Yeah, no. I love playing in Philly. Still have a house there. It's a great city, but they just didn't know what they were doing. And I had made up my mind that I was not going to go back there, but I kept it down the down low.
I did not talk to them privately because I didn't want to alienate the city of Philadelphia. But I said, listen, because because what happened or to be honest with, I had went through two years where basically every team in the NBA was trying to get me. I mean, I remember being on the cover of Sports Illustrated one time. I know for the news they had me in ten different uniforms on the cover for me. And my family went through two years of every single day having to hear bullshit.
So finally, at the end of that eighth year, I told them, I said, hey, listen, I'm not coming back here. I want to do it in a private, professional way, but I'm never coming back here again. And I got traded that summer.
Well, think about if we had the apparatus we have now and two thousand twenty one in nineteen ninety two, it would have come out that you're unhappy. Happy, right. Things would have got leaked social media, all this stuff. It would have been, I feel like a much bigger story that you were clearly not happy with your situation. Yeah.
But I still think that listen, you invested in one or two years. I think that a little bit different. I spent my first eight years in Philadelphia. I had a connection with the fans. The fans have always treated me great assets to a certain degree. The media, they were always supportive of me. They realized the Sixers was were shit organization back then. I mean, we had the number one pick in the draft and gave it away for nothing.
Right? You don't do that. I remember I remember that vividly. I knew that that at the start of the downfall of my career. No, I was just becoming a star. We had the number one pick in the draft and they gave it away for number one, a guy who never played with me, Jeff Rullan, and they traded Moses, who will still play for another five years, who was my mentor. And we got Cliff Robertson and Roy Hanson from Cleveland.
And wait, you you you mixed all this up, those trades were so bad you couldn't remember the how it wasn't it the number one pick for Roy Hanson and then it was Moses' for Jeff Ruben and Cliff Robinson. Right. It was the same trade. Yes, it was two at the same time. Yeah. Those two at the same time. It happened the same day. I remember getting a call like at five thirty in the morning from Bill Jassan, a great deal of Democratises that we actually had been out drinking, celebrating, getting number one pick in the draft for the big guys.
When I get Brad Doretti here, we're going to be kicking them out for the next 10 years. I remember it vividly and I remember I got home and we were I was drunk and I got a phone call around five thirty in the morning from Bill is the truck. You think about the outfield. What are your top races? The number one pick in the draft? I said, I'll tell you what, Bill, let me get up, take a shower, get my stuff together, because I know the Sixers are not that stupid to trade the number one pick in the draft.
And I took a shower and calm down because it was always just a great reporter, he says he the number one pick in the draft, Roy Hanson, and then he says it gets worse if you treated Moses to Washington. And who put Jeff Rouland, who hadn't played in two years and. And I'm just like from that point on, I knew I was doomed in Philly, but I still gave them everything I had. But man, that was the beginning of it.
You know, it's a great fork in the road. What if that you know, there's been so many what ifs over the years in the NBA. That's a really good one, though, because Doretti, until he got hurt, he was really good for nine years. I mean, he was especially in a league where he had a ton of centers. He was really flexible. He could have played forward or center for you. They just done nothing.
If the organization had just like basically been like, we're going to Alaska, just we'll just give us Brad Doretti. Don't do anything else. Then you would add you, Brad, Dorottya Moses, first of all. And I think it would have been good. We would have been really good. I mean, Brad was an all star a bunch of years, and I was at that time, I'm only like twenty four. Twenty five. And I'm just becoming an all star.
Yeah. And I actually made the All-Star team the next eleven years, so I was just starting to be Charles Barkley at the time. But don't forget we still had her supporters a the Dolphins so and we still, we won a couple of games off the bulls. They beat us. I mean they got beat by the press. So if they had not did anything and just born and bred Doretti, we would have been really good for the next two years, were there.
The funny thing is. So that's eighty six. The Celtics have just won the title with this McKale Perrysburg front line and Houston makes the finals with Sampson Olajuwon and everybody's like, got to get bigger, you got to get bigger. Philly had the chance to just have Doretti Moses together to battle all these other twin tower things that that was that was pretty terrible.
Well well, because I think at that point the setup was almost done in eighty six.
They weren't because they thought they were getting Llambias with the second pick and it looked like they were saying was bias died.
Unfortunately they were just they were all past their prime. So we knew it was going to be the bulls are the Pistons for the next ten years, which it was right. It was so we felt I felt really good going forward with Brad Daugherty. I mean, I was I was on cloud nine. I'm like, man, I'm finally going to get some help, you know, because my sisters were Manute Bol, right.
In the late eighties. Yeah, yeah, I, I went to war with Manute Bol as my son. And I love Manute. You know, we had no chance to taco fall right now.
If you had Taco Falls, your center.
Well, you know, I like Taco.
I don't I don't listen, I was on a podcast the other day. I think I actually think the Celtics should play him. I think they need to do something a little weird with their roster every time he comes in. And you saw it when you had Manute. When he comes in, the other team is like discombobulated. Well, this huge guy in the middle that they have to think about.
I say something about the social skills that they got to do something, because right now they're just mediocre. They're not contenders. They got to do something. They just got to do something because the way they currently constructed just an also ran.
Yeah, well, they the east, there's such a drop off after type three. I want to talk about in a second, one more thing on eighty six, did you think there's a chance they're going to take Llambias. No, sexers, I don't think Leon came out that year. No, no, it was Brad Doretti was one. Llambias was two in the eighty six draft. Wow, man, is that OK? I know this name never came up, I mean.
I didn't know. I think they always had their minds to first of all, the answer your question is I don't know what the fuck they were thinking either. I mean, they told me the whole time they were going to take their daughter, and I was excited for that because what his high skills of my local skills and he could go down low and I could go up high. Yeah, it was a nice combination because he was good enough to post up, but he was a great passer.
And, you know, I always tell people that's part of the biggest regret of my career. Not good enough to get in touch with Brent.
Well, bias is the biggest regret. What if of my career as a bat, as a basketball fan, putting them on the Bird McHale team? And to me, you think like the career you had, the career Karl Malone had, and you think like, you know, all star top five, top six powerful players in the league, but also the best power forwards. And you guys are kind of linked in some way. And bias could have been kind of the third guy in that group from your generation.
And he's dead two days after the draft. But I really feel like he was he was that talented that he could have been discussed that way if he could have gotten his shit together off the court.
You know, he was really, really talented. It was going to be interesting what position he played because. He will he had a nice little combination, but you can't really judge guys like that. You see him in person because he had a body of a three man. So he would have been a tough match up for guys in the post. He looked skinny on television, never got the opportunity to meet him in person. But back then, that powerful thing was no joke.
Yeah, there was no joke. That was that the position like you're going to get the hell out of you every single night. And that's just the way it is because, you know, not just call you got Kevin McHale, who's the best player ever played against. You know, he is a nightmare in the post and on defense. All right. So it was it was no joke.
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Whatever your dream, quick books suite of tools can help you get there into it. Quick books help small businesses be more successful. Learn more at cookbook's dakka tzion versus you nineteen eighty six Charles year two versus Tzion right now I. I did a thing on my podcast a couple weeks ago about unicorns and how like when you came in the league I had never seen anybody like you.
You were like a one on one was like what the fuck is this. This guy's six five. He's jumping over people for rebounds. He's a freight train, he's grabbing a rebound. He's going coast to coast and taking it. I was like, what is this? Zion reminds me a little bit of that. But he's also he's got his own unique stuff. When you were does he remind you of you? Well, every undersize power forward they compare to me, first of all, I like that a lot of it seems like a great kid, but I'm not sure why he's not rebounding the ball.
You know, HIDEHIKO games where he get three or four or five rebounds and he should be a double digit rebound guy. He should never have like like one of my rules was I never want to get less than 10 rebounds a game. Yeah, but I think I think I went. I think I went. Fourteen straight years when I was double digit rebounds, I like, so he's a lot more explosive to me, but he only used it in an offense.
He's got to be a better a better rebounder. That's the only problem I have with him. He's not a great I only know what he's average and rebound wise, but it should be 11 or 12. I had that for you. I was going to read you the stats. You're two now. You had better teammates. So your stats aren't like, I think what they would have been if you were on a worse team, but you were twenty and thirteen, 57 percent field goal, seven point two free throw attempts.
Zions twenty four and seven sixty percent field goal. Seven point six free throw attempts. The seven jumped out at me. I don't understand with you I, I don't understand how he's not a ten. How does he look at Donchak average to that four rebounds a game. That, that, that, that makes no sense to me.
Yeah that's the thing. When I watched him play because you know, I got somebody who people always ask me this, so I want to be able to say it correctly. I'm sure the only problem I have with this game is he's just not good enough rebounder for me. But man, he's a lot more explosive, but he's only explosive on offense. So he's got to do a much better job of making an impact on the game on on on the on the rebounding side, we're going to be a great player.
You have to have at least two ways you affect the game. You have to I mean, you can be an all star and a very good player, but to be a great player or a superstar, you got to be able to win a game multiple ways. And that's that's always been the criteria. And there's a lot of guys who go out here and they just get you 25, 30 points and have no other impact on the game. That's not a that's an all star.
That's not a superstar. Well, you know, way you probably get that Tzion question a lot, I think it's really hard for a shorter guy to be overpowering in a basketball game. When we think about overpowering dudes and you think about like Wilt Chamberlain, think about Shaq, think about what upbeats like this year, and then you think about LeBron, who's basically Carmelo and Spotty, but with Magic's mindset. But you and Tzion, I think are probably the only two smaller forwards I remember that feel overpowering at times.
And that's the thing, as I don't think he's as explosive as he was at Duke. I still don't feel like he's 100 percent health wise, but he has these moments where he takes over games the same way you did.
Yeah, but the only problem and he only does it offensively, right. So that's my only gripe.
Well, that was the rap on you back in the day in the mid 80s. People were like, you can't guard anybody. Then then you became a solid defender.
I think, you know, I mean, I got better, but I was still going get you 10 to 15 rebounds and nine rebounds. And now you're making an impact on the game. I mean, I'm still the show. It has got to have a lead, the league in rebounding. And that's one of my most precious stats. But like, I never got less than 10 rebounds a game for at least a 10 year, 12 year period, because the scoring thing anybody can score because if you don't get X amount of plays ran for you, but if you get 10, 12, 13 rebounds a night, you'll make an impact on the game.
Did you lie about your height when you came out of college? Were you saying you were like six, six, six, seven?
You know, that's a great question. I don't think that I was lying. I think it just depends on who you are, what kind of shoes you wear. I truly believe that because I have been measured in shoes and I have been measured bare feet. And so I really think it just depends who measure.
And you got to be honest with you, I never felt with you. I never felt the height thing even like seeing you in person. And it was clear, like, obviously you're six inches shorter than McHale and stuff like that. But it didn't it didn't play out that way. Like in the game, you were still your hands were above everybody else's hands. So it didn't really matter. David Thompson was like that, too, whereas like he was six three, but it felt like he was six seven.
Well, a couple of no one has to have really long arms, believe it or not. I like I can stand beside a guy who's six, seven, maybe even six, eight. And we reach up in my arms of our higher. Yeah. I think the main thing, man, it's just about being physical. Like, I want to hit everything that's moving because. If Carlos a guy is he if he if you got your body on him, he can't jump to exploit his height.
You know, so anybody who's me, who's around me, I'm hitting is every single time, like I say, you might be six, 10, but you're not 16 when you can't jump or somebody hitting you with their hands or the elbow or the shoulder. So the main thing is you have to keep physical contact on the ground playing against. So he only he's not able to use his height to his advantage.
Well, that's why it was so much fun about you and Moses together. I remember there is some crazy stat about the combined offensive rebounds you guys had that you say it was some number that had not been approached by a parent. Moses, I remember writing about in my book, he had that trick where an offensive rebounds. He would basically go almost out of bounds and then he would back in under the basket and then he'd be right and then he'd be right there for tipping.
And teams could never figure out how to stop it. It's I don't I haven't seen anybody else really use that trick. He was he was a one on one with that.
Well, you know, he's the most important person in my basketball career because he got me in shape. Yeah. When I first got to the NBA field, I was two hundred and ninety five pounds somewhere. And I played in college around between two, but always between two, nine and three hundred pounds. And I was in college for three years. My assistant rebounded every year.
And then when I got to the NBA, I wasn't in good shape and I remember me and Moses lived in the same building and I went upstairs and I said, can I come up and talk to you tonight? He said, Come on up, big fella. And I said, Why am I not getting to play Moses? Who's like, you have heard me speak everybody else. He didn't say a lot, but when he spoke, everybody listened to Charles.
You're fat and lazy.
I'm like, what? He says, You're fat and lazy. And you said, you lazy. And no one I stop crying. He used to say, you got a lot of talent, but you're not in good enough shape to work hard. And this guy met me before practice. After practice, I lost 10 pounds to get to 90. Let's keep going to 80 to 70 to 60 to 50, which is what I played at. And if this old guy hadn't taken the time to take care of a little fat kid from Alabama, I might eat myself out of the NBA.
And I've seen that happen to a bunch of guys over my career who couldn't get their weight under control. So I'm I tell people, man, Moses is by far and away the most important person in my career. But also, I'm proud of myself for listening to him, you know, a lot of our kids don't listen to old people. They think we're full of shit. Frankly, I'm glad I was smart enough to listen to Moses. And the rest is history.
You're given basically the exact same speech to Oliver Miller eight years later and he doesn't listen.
It didn't work that they did. That wouldn't work out that good for me, you know? You know, it's a very interesting thing because I went through the same stuff with the Patiño Mobley and Steve Francis later, my friend, when I got traded to the Houston. Because the league had changed because they were bringing so many young kids in, but you got to remember when I got to Philly, I had Doc Moses, Maurice Cheeks, Andrew, Tony, Bobby Jones, Clement Johnson, Clint Richardson.
When I had great guys around me who, like they taught me how to dress. They taught me how to save my money. I mean, they taught me stuff that's bigger than basketball. But somewhere along that way. They we started drafting kids younger and younger, so they phased out all the old guys.
And so then we became to the last old guys trying to work with the young guys and we were just like a prisoner as hold them back and they didn't listen to us.
Yeah, that was a weird time for the week, I was called the too much, too fast, too soon era that that stretched from basically Shack's drafts all the way through maybe the ninety eight draft where these guys are coming in. They're making big money right away. They're famous out of the gate and they probably want to hear some of the lessons from some of these people. I do feel like it's corrected itself, though. I've been really impressed by the last 10, 12 years of draft classes.
And these guys come in. They're really mature. They're finished products. I think they they handle their business the right way. They're pros. You see guys who are twenty, twenty one, twenty two years old who really seem like they have their shit together. I don't feel like that was the case 20 plus years ago.
Well, I think these guys they got because of social media and things like that, they got more things at their hands. And I personally don't like the basketball personally because, you know, I can't remember the last time a rookie really made an impact, to be honest with you. And I think that hurts the game. I'm thinking, you know, you look at this year, the ball is probably a favorite for Rookie of the Year. The kid in New York quickly is doing fantastic, but I don't think any of these other guys are really doing anything.
You go back the last few years, I mean, Loka won Rookie of the Year, but he's not really a fair rookie. Yeah. So I would really love to see some of these guys stay in college for a minimum of two years, because I think that I think it hurts our game honestly, because our game is designed with a bad team, get help and they're not getting that right now. I tell people what you want somebody to come in ready to play.
And I understand he just agents are scumbags that want them to get to the money as soon as possible and get to the second contract. But I always look at what's good for the game. Hey, if I'm a fan and I'm paying these outrageous prices for tickets and my team is in last place, I don't want to go to a guy who might be good in five years. I want someone I want a Larry Bird and Magic Johnson of along Milonov just talking the.
But I want somebody to come in and ready to play right now. I don't want to bring in a little skinny kid who's one hundred and seventy pounds and in four or five years it might be good. So so we disagree a little bit on the caliber of player that's coming into the NBA today.
Yeah, I was talking more the the the off the court stuff, the personality, the person that's coming in now, they're they're way more polished. Even somebody like and Tatum was a rookie and the Celtics and he would give interviews like how the fuck does he know how to give an interview? It's nineteen.
You know, I think that I'm going to do even though was for one year, but around being been around Kosta Szeptycki and things like that, because I know Mike has got a Mike is a great coach, obviously, but he's a good do. So I think it would surprise me if they did some media training do and the same thing was done. I think Don is very polished for his age, but I think also depends on the people around going to school.
You go to. Yeah, well, when you talk about rookies in situations like Melo is in a really good situation and part of it is because MJ overpaid for Hayward, we thought Hayward has been really good. He's finally been healthy, is, you know, borderline all star. Last year they allegedly overpaid for Roger.
I've made fun of them for it. Roger's been really good. He's been better than Kemba and that team is solid. That team is first in their division right now. So you see like lamella kind of fits in with what they have. And that's been really good for him. If he'd gone to like Minnesota and he was playing with all those dudes and that's basically like a fantasy team, not a basketball team. I don't know if he would be even close to the same success.
Well, I think you have to give back all credit for a couple reasons. Number one, he did a great job with Melo. He said he's proud of front runner for Rookie of the year if he stays healthy. Yes. But also the Celtics, Miss Gordon Hayward, such as Miss Going Hayward. You know, he he's I think sometimes people when they talk about basketball, they don't really know what the hell they talking about. And it drives me crazy, like, oh, he's overpaid and he doesn't pay, they begin to be much better without him.
I, I'm not sure about that. And he's done a good job in Charlotte. I mean, he's done a good job in Charlotte. So these guys, man Haywood is seltzer's really means, hey, when you watch him play.
Yeah. It's funny, I have some huge South Park fan. He had a moment last year first like seven, eight games of the season when he finally seemed healthy and then he broke his finger and he was out and then he came back and it was the same then it was like on the bubble will be great. Sprains his ankle in the first game, I think sometimes. People could just be that you can have too much baggage with the situation and a team in a city, and it started to become this thing where it was just like it was never going to go right for him in Boston.
I'm not surprised he's doing well in Charlotte. I feel like he needed to get out of Boston, you know, because you start your career, you have one of the worst injuries you can have in a game in the in the second quarter of your first game with the team. And then it's just, you know, it was one thing after another. And at the same time, Tatum and Brown passed him. He was the third most important for the league.
I think he wanted to be an important guy again.
Yeah, but I think sometimes the way they structured right now don't mesh together. I think they would have been better with what he would be in their second best player. That's the way they constructed right now. They're mediocre at best. But if they just because somebody is a better player does not mean it's a better fit. Right. Tatum and Brown are better players, but they might not be a better fit. I'm trying to think of a situation was in the NBA.
I can't remember right off hand, but I'm pretty sure that was like, hey, we got more talent. Oh, Kyrie is a perfect example. You know, you don't have to read, it's like, wait a minute, we've got kind of read now. We've got we got worse results. Just because a player is a better player than mean, you're going to have better results. It has to fit together like a puzzle.
Yeah, well, that's been the problem with the subtext this year. The players don't make sense collectively. They're still basic stuff, you know, and you watch other teams where it's like team probably has less talent than the Celtics, but they play well together. I think Dallas is in a unique situation right now. And you were talking about when you didn't play well in a game, you would just go get rebounds. This is one of my favorite things about Bird.
Bird was making a shot. He'd go get 18 rebounds. You know, he'd be like, I'm going to affect the game this way. I do think Luca has some of that in him. I love the fact that it's not just that he's filling up the stat sheet Westbrook style with like fake triple doubles and jumping in after the free throws, trying to pad the stat stuff like that. He actually like will go down and get a couple of the biggest rebounds in the game and I do feel like he can effect games if his shots not going in.
But yet I don't really like watching the Mavericks this year and maybe a lot of it has to do with poison gas isn't really poisonous yet. What do you see with them the rest of the way? Do you do you feel like they're asleep or are you writing them off?
I'm writing them off. I think they rely way too much on Luka. We also talked about this on the show last week. We had them on like they just give him the ball every single time and say, hey, make a play. And if he makes a player has a great night, they win. I don't think they use basilicas went up in the post. I mean, he's seven two and he's getting out about five or six feet, five or six.
So he's going to have a huge advantage. You can't stop him in the league. Never goes anyplace, any time. Every time he jacks up a three. I know the guy said thank you. Thank you. So it was fun about there were three point shooting team in the league. Yeah. Keep jacking it up. One thing I hate about the game today is like we just going to come to the gym and shoot a bunch of threes that we make them is going to be great if we don't make and we don't lose all the coaches that we didn't make enough shots like, OK, you two were shooting three point shooting team in the league while you while you're shooting so many.
And that's what the Mavs are. But they're way, way too much rely way too much on Loka. I mean, he's a hell of a player, but. He didn't with the bulls, didn't get the ball to Michael Jackson is a perfect example of what that said, because I was thinking about that because I probably want to talk about the Mavs. So, like, you go back and look at that last dance documentary. Those don't have a successor to remember, they told Michael.
Michael, you've got to stop shooting the ball so much, you've got to get the other guy. And obviously the rest is history. I feel the same way. Well, look, we're not comparing him to Michael, but if you watch them play, they give him the ball up and down the court every single time. And you're not going to win like that.
Yeah, it's this weird usage rate boom that's happened the last five, six years. And I think it starts with Houston and Harden where they're able to succeed when he has the ball all the time. But then you get to a playoff series and teams see that six, seven times in two weeks. And they're like, all right, we're used to this. We actually know how to stop. The Celtics are a little bit of this position right now, even though Tatum and Brown, I don't think, are on the level of Lucca and Hart and people like that, but they rely so much on offense from those two guys.
You look at their assists, they're like twenty eighth in assists over and over again. Those guys have to be the one that are basically going one on one against whoever in the last eight, nine minutes. And they don't have like that third score is supposed to be Kemba, but they don't have that third person to help. They don't have the same kind of ball movement. And there's a stagnancy with some of these teams that, well, Dallas is a great example.
Well, they're a perfect example, but your symptoms are similar the same way too, because it seems like. They just kind of take turns, they don't yes, they don't play the game, you know, they don't play the game. They just like, OK, is your time, Jaylon. OK, it's your turn, Jason. Now's your time. Kemba And it don't look like they're just playing basketball and they're very stagnant and they're not a lot of fun to watch.
To be honest with you, you know, the first year the Heat with LeBron and Wade about issues like that as they try to figure each other out.
And there's a guy at your turn this time. All right. Let's run a play for Bosh. And it was never like they were just playing pickup.
Well, it's kind of like I remember when I did the thing on LeBron, I saw LeBron LeBron basketball player or yourself, and I called all on. When I went to Phoenix. A guy asked me, well, who team is it? I said, what do you mean? He says, was being Kevin and dance team is my team now. It's my team down there with me. I love those guys, but they're with me. And I remember talking to LeBron on the show as he was deferring so much to those other guys, like, nah, man, you're the best player, don't defer.
And I think definitely when we score like it was like the game six, I call them out before game six, I mean, you don't have to defer to Dwayne Wade or anybody else. That's just the way it should work. You're the best player. You get all the shots. You want these other guys you just played, but you got a green light. They got like a yellow light them to guys, put your best player you can defer.
Right, LeBron? He went crazy that night, if I remember correctly. We had him out here at the first time. He scored forty for the for the heat and they beat you and they beat him in game six in Boston. And I said it for the game, too. Great. They never going to win this thing until they stop before LeBron stop deferring and taking over. And he did that night. It was beautiful to watch.
It wasn't beautiful for me. I was there.
I didn't have a good time. This episode is brought to you by Verizon, if you're a mobile gamer, you've heard every excuse under the sun there hacking. This game is glitchy, but the lamest one by far is blaming your losses on lag. Eliminate the excuses with Verizon, 5G, the 5G that changes the game. Now with the unprecedented performance, 5G, ultra wide being the fastest 5G in the world, with massive capacity, ultrafast speeds and ultra low lag for console level gaming on the go.
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It's select from a range of your favorite neighborhood restaurants with Uber eats.
Tonight, I'll be eating local, specifically Italian, because I'm half Italian. You know, it travels great on Uber. It's chicken parmesan, one of my favorite entrees. It's something I get all the time because again, I'm half Italian. Eat local with Uber eats tonight. You guys did this to embed last year, and I know your show's 20 years, you've got a documentary coming out next month, and it's been interesting to watch it evolve as kind of a barometer for what's happening in the league and how it affects some of the players you talk about.
Right, because the players are more sensitive than ever these days. But last year you had one of the best conversations I think you've ever had on the show about Embiid where there was real disappointment and Shaq talked about what he didn't see from Embiid what he needed to do and you talked about it and basically you were like Hey man you got handed the the complete car wash package here. You're not taking care of it, you're not in good enough shape, you have to be better.
This, this isn't good enough. What we're seeing and I do he talked about it after it seemed like it resonated with them. And then when you watch what he's doing this year, where he is in shape, where he can play four quarters in a row without getting tired, where he's dominating, where he's added stuff to his game, like I do feel like you guys played a small part in that. Like, do you do you feel responsibility with that stuff sometimes?
Well, we have a responsibility, to be honest. I'm going to be a straight shooter, Bill. You know me. I'm going to be a straight shooter. But it's due to be out there shooting threes defenders like, thank goodness I'm going to have to wrestle with this big dude in the post. And every time he shoots the three, the defense like, oh, thank you. Now, you see this year he's going to post nine percent of the time.
He just killing people because you can't guard him. You cannot guard this dude. He is just too big, too strong, too quick, because I don't know who you put on him. You know, there are certain guys like a Kevin Durant of Novitsky Yokich. Yes. But OK, if you put a big guy enemies too quick, you put a little guy on him is too big for him. And Embry's in that same category. You can put a big, big goof on him.
He just going to go around him. Every time you put a little guy on him, you just go kill him in the post. And so. What are these guys that they just play basketball? They don't think basketball. They just play. They don't think like we look at me like the other night they had like. A six three guy guarding him and he got out of the post, we highlighted it like five times because now everybody switches everything.
I've got a bunch of dummy plays about these guys. Oh, they're going to switch. We're going to have four singles in the post against a point guard or to guard a small forward. But these guys don't run dummy play. They just run their regular offense. And if we're going to post a lot more and that's a matter of fact, I mean, Shaq said a couple of years ago, Rick Carlisle went crazy on us again. And some of those guys are just old timers and not in the game, not played like that anymore.
And I'm like, well, first of all, first of all, we're going to be fair and honest. Like I if if I with a title for Zangas. M.B all want to go to put their whole career on shoot threes, they're never going to win anything. There's no reason to call out for the child to be shooting a bunch of threes. So have advantage in the polls. Quickness every single night. Same thing with a B. Anthony Davis.
He'll shoot Breeze but he spends a lot more time in the post. Everybody see now Lumbees in the post he's writing a conversation with LeBron and Donovan Mitchell for MVP this year because he just killing people in the post. We have a you know the answer to this. It's easier to shoot eight threes a game. It's hard work to go to the post. You get banged around, you got to work on it. You got to take care of it.
And, you know, some guys just don't want to do it. I look at it to me, it's like. It's like football, I want to do the thing that the other team doesn't want me to do, and you see like even somebody like Janice and they've been so determined to turn Yoni's into this three point shooter and this guy who faces the basket. And I'm like, all I know is every time that guy's near the basket, the other team panics the ball six feet from the basket.
They all stand there. People are jumping around. They're trying to double team him. They don't know what to do. And it's like maybe you should do that. Over half of them shoot threes.
One hundred percent agree with you. Like, he never pulls up ever. I'm like, wait here. People stuff they would have to double or they are going to score or get fouled. But they were on that often, like, here's Johnny, here's the ball at the top of the team score on these five guys. I'm like, are you kidding me? That's not an offense.
I want him near the basket. He is he is so explosive. He's got such great hands. He's so good around the basket with Tippins and things like that. You've put in twenty five feet away from the basket. I know it works during the regular season, but in the playoffs I want him around the basket. I want to beat around the basket. I want Davis around the basket. You saw what happened the Lakers last year. They won because they overpowered the other team for four straight rounds.
And the thing that drives me crazy is they belong in Milwaukee, which I'm job lost in the play of the last two years, the exact same way they can score against a wall. I'm like, OK, the first year it can work shouldn't work anymore. It worked again. And now even when you want to play right now, you can see it's going to end badly for them. But they went exactly the same way they did last two years ago.
They just get a body honest and let him go. One, two, five. And there's not going to work is going to work against Oklahoma, Orlando, Sacramento, the Wizards, the Hawks. But it's not going to work in the playoffs. If it didn't work is not going to work. Even Boston mediocre. It's not going to work against him in the playoffs. There's not going to work against Miami. They're mediocre, too. I'm not even talking about Philly and Brooklyn in a situation.
Well, Brooklyn played Milwaukee early in that hard and trade and it became a game, a three and three in the last five minutes. And guess what? Brooklyn, Brooklyn, three guys are just better at scoring. The Mohawk is best three guys and you can feel it in the game. It's a game. Walk is playing well. But Brooklyn's just slightly better than them, and I am already trying to reconcile the fact Brooklyn is going to win these east unless unless somebody gets hurt, they're going to get some sort of buyout guy to help out, because DeAndre is you know, he's pretty mediocre or worse at this point.
They'll get a bad guy, but they're going to win the East unless something someone gets injured.
Well, I feel like Philly in the East because the Brooklyn can't protect the basket. They can't rebound the ball.
But is that going to matter? They're just going to outscore teams. They can get two and a half points every possession.
Yeah, that sounds good in theory. But you've got a. I still wonder what what's going to happen again out when they all three trying to score. That's going to be less possessions, I think, and only one of those guys is proving to me he's willing to sacrifice for the betterment of the team. In this case. It's Joe Harris. I know that is Joe Harris I was getting. Yeah.
That the ultimate sacrifice guy. He's never yeah. He's never going to get the shots. He deserved the attention he deserved from those three guys. You know, you put him with Philly and Milwaukee. He'd be a hell of a I take them on the Celtics.
Let me give you the case for Brooklyn falling apart in the playoffs. It's in three parts. One, you just mentioned, those three guys in crunch in crunch time and close games. Who who who wants who wants to grab the steering wheel looking at each other and then it's just being off the dash as a rookie coach and then them not being able to get stops. So there is a path. I just feel like they're ceiling when I think about them versus Philly, because I think it's going to be them first in these finals and Simmons is going to be guarding either Harden or Durant.
OK, so he can share one of those guys. Let me ask you another question. If the sceptics, the sceptics, Asselin, could give them a handful or two because of Kimbal can get it going with Brown, they won't be able to really get that thing going again. Brooklyn. Well, what happens is when you play like they play, you can make a good team really good because Tobias Harris is going to score. No, he's going to score.
Simmons can share one of those guys down or he can pull one of those two guys up. So they make things harder on themselves. They play a little bit and they'll be easy. They'll be tough to beat. But because the way they play is like, wait, Tobias Harris going to score against James Harden territory? That's a fact. They got nothing for m.b nothing flambeed. But the other thing is someone's going to be like Tobias Harris and someone's going to be able to score.
Gets hard and mind. Harris. Yeah I think. I think.
If I'm Brooklyn. It all looks good on paper, and I still I still think they're going to win these. It all looks good on paper, but we haven't seen it. We haven't seen these guys together. And the coach has been in this situation, all of these different pieces. I still feel like if Embiid averaged 40 points a game in that series, I still feel like Brooklyn could beat them. I'm just penciling in thirty eight a game for Embiid.
I still think they can get Brooklyn. Could get to one hundred and twenty two hundred and twenty five points a game in a playoff series. My question for Philly is how do you get to the number of points per game that you're going to need to beat them four times. It is go to one hundred and. 16 last night without Joel Embiid right in there last night he gave up like 130 you know because the one Utah's playing fantastic but also.
Ben Simmons had forty five, forty four or forty five, so he proved to me like, man, this guy, he was posting up a lot last night. So listen, that's what's going to be fun watching the playoffs. Steve Nash has never been there before. Those those guys know been on a press before it ever said would have been on the press before, but not together. No, I mean, because now you've got to worry about the egos, like.
I want because I want I want to be the guy who makes this next shot, I want to get up moving on to the next round so you never know because you remember something. I remember the last time Ross and Katie played together and I and we thought they had come together, right. Three one lead in the West finals, but they get up three to one on the Warriors. And they revert back to the way they used to play, like the first two rounds of the playoffs, they played unselfish.
They just played basketball. But when they got up three one, I said at halftime they were up. They were up at halftime in game six. And I says, what do you think? I said, I'm not feeling good right now. And he says, Chuck, there are three to two. They're up and running. I saw a lot of bad habits in the first half. They've started playing like they used to play well instead of just playing basketball.
Somebody wanted to get the credit. I want to play Hero Ball. And I remember Ernie coming to me after the game. He says, How did you know that? As Ernie? I've been watching basketball a long time. I said I thought they had got obvious, like, don't worry about who gets the credit, let's just win the game. And they had it weren't for five games. Absolutely, they should have won game five. They didn't shoot well in game five, I went to that game.
Yeah, they just didn't they didn't shoot well, but they were there.
They were ready to take that personal one down to the buzzer. Yeah. Rosses, when it on back to Oklahoma City, it was one of the best environment. I said this is their game seven. They better win and they can say they were up at halftime, but they played selfish. And I said, oh, Shishani. And he and he said, You think they're going to win? I say, not going to win by going back to Hero Ball.
They had it made two, three rounds of the playoffs with no hero in the first half on game six to clinch. They were like, I will people say I'm the reason we won that series. They start playing Hero Ball. And I was they lost in seven. But that was the Klay Thompson game, too. That was it. Helping them either.
Yeah, but but even with Clay was going crazy, they were still up at halftime. Yeah. No, I know I we broke down that game like two years ago. OKC fell apart more than Klay Thompson when they really needed the last five, six minutes. That completely fell apart because they were trying to play hirable. You know, one thing about this thing Will. Very few people don't want credit. Instead, they were like, I want to make this list or the basket, you know, one thing I can say about Michael Jordan hey, John Paxson.
Steve Kerr had two of the biggest shots of his career. He just want to win the game he won worrying about, hey, I'll take him away from his team, get ready packs, get ready. And I think a great player you like my job is to get other guys open shots just to make the shot every time. Can we go back to Ben Simmons for one second? I did a passionate defense of him on Sunday night because basically for I think he's this guy who's been picked apart a lot, including even by me and some of his offensive stuff.
But he is the most important defensive player in the league other than maybe Gober. We watched him in the span of three weeks, do really nice job against LeBron, made him work for everything, and then three weeks later Guards' Dame Lillard and shut them down and shut him down in a way that was kind of staggering to watch. And you just think like. This I is just one of the best 12, 15 players in the league who just is if you're Houston, how do you not get him in the trade over a bunch of picks that you don't know what the picks are going to be like?
I can get Ben Simmons. Why are they taking that? And then if you're Philly, thank God they didn't take it, because I actually I don't know. The more I watch Simmons and especially last night, which was his offensive breakout, and that was the game where it's like, hey, if he didn't have Embiid, if you built a whole offense around him you gave him the ball all the time and you let him be this inside outside guy who created for himself and others.
You could be a playoff team just with that. And now. No we haven't seen, we haven't seen it, we saw it last night.
So where do you stand on Ben Simmons right now until you learn how to shoot? He's going to be an all star. Can't be a superstar to learn how to shoot the ball. Because the one thing we're sure of, Bill, we always the ball always finds a guy who can shoot in the playoffs. It's true. And he's a great defender. He's a hell of a player. But at some point, you don't have to make a shot.
A big shot right now. He's so reluctant to shoot the ball, I think that's going to always come back to bite him in the air. We've got to look like. I think he's afraid to shoot the ball. He wasn't afraid last night. Well, he was just that was just out like if you keep it, like you keep it in a little box. I mean, he's great around the basket, but I'm saying. Under pressure, they're going to double M.B.
And that's that's a that's a great point you make. Why isn't he that aggressive offensively when Joel Embiid is not there? That's actually a great point you just made. Thanks. He was great and aggressive last night. Why is he like that when tumbes there, it will only make the team better? I mean, he is not going to get 40 points, but I wonder how many times he's got to be a great stat. How many times he had twenty points with Embiid on the floor.
That would be a great start.
Well two things have changed for him right. One is that he knows they tried to trade him but they can say what they want now. But we know that, we know that he was in that hard trade and that if it had gotten to the point where Houston wanted that more than the picks, that guy from Brooklyn, they would have done it. The second thing. You know that the Doc Rivers piece can't be underrated, and I know he's had some playoff collapses over the years, but he does have Whiskas, the ability to pump them up and push for them and kind of be like a kind of a cross between a coach and a big brother.
And I do think he's helping those guys. I do think he deserves some credit for Embiid and Simmons how they're playing this year.
No, no don't. Defense attorney asked me that on the show the other night. Thanks for watching. It doesn't matter. Or they ask me as it don't even matter. I feel he's done fairly well on the matter of what happens in the playoffs. I mean and I said Philly, Milwaukee Lakers, Clippers, if they don't win a championship is a lost season. Bill is going to be. They've been one of the three best teams in the East for the last probably four or five years unless they get to the finals.
It does not matter if you like. They got to get to the finals to have a successful season. You know, they had to crush the last four years. They blame everything on Brett Brown and blame everything on Brett Brown. My post wasn't cooked enough always Brett Brown. So I ordered a medium well steak. It is really not well, but well enough is on Brett Brown now. They got to coach. You said they got to coach.
Now, Philly, Philly's just trying to get to the regular season. And if they don't say anything with the Milwaukee Bucks, unless they get to the finals, there's a long season. So I'm not even going to worry about Philly or Milwaukee. I watch them, but like, nah, man, all that stuff don't matter. Y'all got to get to the finals and probably. Milwaukee's probably got to win it because they've had the best record in the east like three years in a row, but Philly, I think that they get to the final, that could be somewhat of a good season.
But the same thing with the Clippers. No, man, you talk to your coach on the bus. You said he was the reason. So now they got to get they got to get to the finals or win it. I mean, of the Lakers, they got to winning, but they've already won it. But the Clippers, the Sixers and the Bucks, they got to get to the finals or this season is all.
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Live sports breaking news and a mountain of entertainment. Paramount plus streaming March 4th. Who do you think the Lakers would rather not play in the finals, Philly or Milwaukee or Brooklyn? Who do you think they would not want to see? Well, it's interesting you say that because it depends on the match up, ain't got nobody to have a LeBron against KD, that would be a great matchup if LeBron can. He used to be a great defender.
Could he what can he do against Kobe? That would be great to watch. But Guy, nobody can handle Abe. But this dude is always hurt like he was the biggest difference in them last year when he down at the post, he would kill Brooklyn, he would kill Brooklyn. They got nobody to handle him. But same thing. It's all about match ups of a seven game series is all about match ups. Hey. I think they would rather play out in Brooklyn, to be honest with you.
I think I think Brooklyn would be the team they wouldn't want to play because they're such a weird team, because you think about a seven game series so easy.
Seven games, though, like going for Anthony Davis. He's going to have his way. LeBron will have his way. Those other guys, they know Kyrie and James ain't going to play defense. So that's going to make them aware of it. Kind of like a boxing match. Yeah. Like if you're going to fight a guy and you're just going to jab each other. Now, if a guy can knock your ass out, you don't want that guy because like, you got to keep your head on a swivel the whole time.
You know, you talk about see, that's one thing. Those Rockies teams, those Suns teams coached by Mike D'Antoni, those are easy games. There's no physicality. We just got to outscore them four times, you know, and scoring like, well, scores because they're not going to play in the deep end. They're not going to rebound the ball. Can I give you the can I give you the case for Brooklyn? Sure. And I don't think they're going to beat the Lakers, but I'm just going to give you the blueprint.
They have to win four times in seven games, so, you know, there will be the one different game, you know, they'll be the one hearting game, you know, they'll be the one Chiri game where those guys just basically are awesome. And either they win the game or it's like that last minute and then they just need one game. More of them play together and they could throw away the other three games. They could lose by 20 and all of them.
But you think like the Lakers, because we've seen this with Miami, too. I do think there was some wear and tear in the in the way last season played out with that bubble and then start this really fast the next year. We've seen it affect Miami. Davis is now legit hurt and it seems like he's going to be to after the All-Star break. And LeBron said, you're 18. Like you got a factor that I know is superhuman.
But at some point there's going to be wear and tear of the Lakers. Well, that's true, but I'm saying it's not the wear and tear won't show up against Brooklyn because it's not going to be a physical demand and series. We just got to go to the gym and play like Replaster Street Ball, like when you go back to D'Antoni in Phoenix and in Houston, this is an easy game to play against. Mike just outscores not going to be physical.
We don't get all the shots we want. They don't get all the shots they want. We just got to beat them four times and we think we got the best big guy, so we're going to get some easy baskets and some foul trouble. I still feel like I still feel like Brooklyn, the chance of them getting a buyout guy, that's going to piss me off like, oh, we have Andre Drummond now. Like what? How did you get Andre Drummond?
Yeah, Cleveland couldn't trade him. They bought him out. Now he's a Brooklyn that.
Well, first of all, I agree with you. I think if they get one quality big guy, I think they do become the favorite. I truly believe that. I mean, look, I mean, just talking to some people I know in the NBA, they've been really trying for the last month. They realize, like, yo, man, we can't rebound the ball. And it's like an open door policy going to the basket on us.
Well, they panicked. They they threw Jarrett down and that trade to get one more crappy pick. I don't I still don't feel like they should have traded him. I think I think I'm doing anything I can to keep him.
I'm doing anything I can to keep him, too. I'm a big Jared Allen fan. I would have never traded him. That was. Yeah, I didn't get that.
Wait, one more thing I have for you. The. The fact that we thought the center position was dead. And now we have embedded in Yokich, who have kind of reignited it and we're seeing stuff night tonight at the center position plus gober and the effect he said on Eutaw feels like centers are kind of back like this is this is we wrote them off. We had the funeral centers are back. Buildings should have never fucking level like 15 is really interesting about the NBA today, it was on a great day when it had Katie, Steph and Clay.
They were the greatest shooting team probably ever. Yes. There's seven more team going back to Katie's last year in and Golden State, there are seven more teams. The Rockies are an outlier, so there's six more teams shooting more threes than the Warriors. That's absurd. That's absurd. I talked about the air, as I said, I got all my numbers, I said there are eight more teams shooting threes and more threes than the greatest shooting team we've ever seen.
I said Iraqis, OK? They do, they think, but what are these other six teams thinking? What are they thinking? And then you go back like Karl Anthony Towns No. One three point shooter. Most attempts on the world like why if your best shooter is seven feet tall, you're fucking team suck and it will suck. And I says. Why in the world would be the biggest, most imposing big man, NBA, SESAC, while he had to shoot threes?
The Joker, he just played a game, that's why he's brilliant, but this notion, like I'm trying to think of another beast of big guy, DeAndre Ayton should be a big guy in the post and they got him standing around. You post up nearly enough. But this notion that we I don't want my big guys shooting threes because I was shipping batteries. No. Wanted us to do a couple of things for you. No one to give us the defense off the hook.
It makes the guy lazy, but also your team never gets into foul trouble if your big guy is not. First of all, if you put a big guy in the post, you're going to a double team so you don't get wild threes instead of contested threes. And I think, what, some threes on a lot better than contested threes. So it's a lot of things going to these guys make the game they call other the towns. You're seven feet tall.
Maybe you should post up every now and then because of these other. I mean, think about this here, Bill. When he plays against the Houston Rockets, they put on him six, five guys out there. Why in the world when I shoot threes that I'm seven feet tall against the Houston Rockets, I'm trying to think, well, you know, on the flipside of this, like, I like how Julius Randle was playing this year, then next have kind of rejuvenated his game.
And he's an inside, outside guy. He can face up, but he also will post up. Sabonis is another guy like that. There are people that loosen up and it's effective. I think Sabonis is one of the best 10 to 15 best players in the NBA. I think I'm the second kid who went crazy when I said I said that's a bonus. Kid is one of 10 best fifteen players in the league and Julius Randle should be an all star this year.
He's played fantastic. But I'm glad you mentioned Sabonis because he's one of the ten to 15 best players in the world. I mean, he's unbelievable.
Yeah, I think there's, there's big guys who are creative in the way that like, you know, Urara. We also have a little suns come back with the center like a legit, you know, they can make round to possibly be round three if there are some injuries that I think they're a good team.
Well, the key is going to be the key with them bringing in Chris Paul. You know, I'm a big Chris Paul fan as well. I think he's going to be great for Booker. I think he's also going to be great for DeAndre. But getting Jae Crowder was a big deal. I think Jae Crowder is one of the most underrated players in the NBA. He's one of the little guys who like, hey, I'm going to play defense, I'm going to work hard.
If I get a shot, I'm going to shout, but I'm not going to move and complain about it. Know, a lot of times when you get certain guys, like, I'm not getting shots, I'm just going to walk around out here and not do my thing. The crowd is not like that. The worst is behind us. And then when they give him a ball, he shoots it. But the rest of time he does all the dirty work out there.
And the bridges is coming along to Cam Johnson, too.
I like that there. I like that they're malleable. They can go smaller, they can play a little bigger depending on their playing. I like that crunch time five. I think they play well together when they have Johnson and Bridges out there with Chris Paul and Ayton Booker like it's effective and they play with a certain pace because of Chris that not that they're at their own speed.
You know what I mean, Chris. Chris to me is the key that they do. They make fun of me on the inside because I always said Chris Paul is the greatest, best leader. We got the NBA for the last ten or fifteen years. And I think he is what he does is put he he controls the tempo of the game. But the last few years, they didn't know whether to go fast or slow. Yeah, there's times you should go for that time.
You should slow down. Chris is the best in the business of doing that. Steve Kerr was like that also. But Chris is just amazing.
Before we go, I wanted to mention it's been funny watching the younger guys. They get upset at the show sometimes as you're in year twenty here. And I remember even when I was doing a bunch of podcast with Durant and Duran and one of the podcasts talked about, like it really hurt his feelings that your show was so critical that the old guys really seem to resent the new generation shooting too many threes. You don't do this. You don't do that.
My day was better. It feels like this is getting this kind of gap between your generation and the generation that's in the league. It feels like more bitter than it ever was. And I was watching the night when Durant was giving one word answers on the show. There was another weird show and I actually disagreed with how Shaq handled the Mitchell thing. I thought it was weird because I think Mitchell's been really good this year and Shaq just kind of came out of the gate just being a dick to him.
But what's going on with this whole divide? What is. You said it earlier, these guys are so sensitive, I learned my lesson from Dr. Jay. Because I was a couple of critical things written about me when I was just getting becoming a star year, my second year, he was kind of passing the torch to me and he just gave me a bunch of advice. And he said, Charles, the first thing I want you to do before so when somebody write something bad about you, take a step back and say, is it true?
That's the first thing. Is it true now you can get mad if it's not true, but the first question you have to ask yourself, is it true? I feel very good about what I say about players is never been personal. If they're going to overreact to everything, we you know what's interesting, I tell you that, you know, they never call me when I saw some great about them. You know, they've never called me back when I said James Harden was the best one on one player I've ever seen.
And people said, Charles is full of shit, Charles full of shit, and then like the next year, like. Jones is right. James Harden is the best one on one player I've ever seen. I'm not saying I say he's not bad Michael Jordan or Kobe Bryant, but the way the game is today, he's a better three point shooter than those guys. You can shoot free throws just as good. He can finish just as good. James Harden is the best one on one player we've ever had an NBA career structure today.
He didn't call me and say thank you, but if I've been critical about how much he drove us to say, it wouldn't be fun to watch him the day he and his little Delamare get upset. I'm like, wait, you didn't call me when I say the best one on one player. But listen, I'm not going to change my approach. I have an obligation to the fans to be honest and straightforward. These guys want to get all bent out of shape.
That's on them, and I'm and I want to make it clear I'm definitely not one of those. Get off my lawn got. All I'm saying, and we just had a conversation about it, you said, as a rebirth of big man, I'm like, now the big guys finally took the big guys down to the boat. So let's see if you guys want to shoot threes just fine. But there's no reason for calling Townsend and be the kid here in Phoenix.
The Joker. The Joker very seldom shoot Breeze. I mean, I said, wow. So do you think that's critical? That's fair. But I have nothing against these guys, you know.
You know what it is. So I think this is the biggest piece of it other than it's a generational thing. They all check their Twitter replies all day. They check their Instagram, their Twitter, all that stuff. And when you guys hammer somebody or you're even critiquing somebody, it becomes a three minute clip. That's a Twitter replies in twenty minutes. And you have all these like it's almost like a tattletale type thing, like, oh, Berkeley chick lit you up, you know, and they read that and then they just get mad and they watch the clip, they get mad or they don't see the context of it.
And again, sometimes it's gone overboard. I thought the Shaq macho thing, as I said, was was pretty over the top. But for the most part, I just think that people see it and they consume it and react faster than 10 years ago. Because I remember I thought one of the best shows we talked about this one of the best shows you ever had was 2010, the Browns last Cavs season, that game five you had against Boston when he just kind of disappeared.
And it was really weird. And you guys came on and you were all so profoundly disappointed because you had believed he was a great player in that. And you have this honest conversation about like what just happened. How are we supposed to feel about this guy now? I think if that you fast forward that ten years, then it becomes dissected the same way it does in this weird social media generation we're in now where it's just like Berkeley. Here's the clip and it becomes the thing.
I agree with your brother. We got to do our job. I agree, I mean, like I bet my usual example. I think the shelters are mediocre. You know, and I think you agree with me. That's not a criticism, that's just a fact that the subtext, the way they are currently constructed, are not going to win and win in the playoffs, like just because Danny Ainge is a friend of mine and you are a fan of something, I don't expect you to get on your bike as my soldiers are contenders, I believe.
Well, that's not critical. That's just a fact. Now they prove us wrong. We'll say we were wrong. But like right now, doing your job, would you agree that, you know, I got a lot of love and respect for you, but you can't get on any network or you can say, you know, we're contenders, you know, that don't like just because you love or something like, yeah, we're not going to win a championship the way we set up right now.
I always default to that example. You talked about Dr. Dre like Dr. J. Hey, if I. Is it true if you're going to say something like, do you really believe it? Can you prove it? I have you know, I have like certain small biases, like I don't really like the whole Atlanta Trillian thing. And then the Hawks fans like you hate Trae Young. Why do you hate Trae Young so much? It's like it's not that I hate Trae Young.
I just hate that they set up the system where they treat him like he's a superstar. He won anything. He gets to take any terrible shot. What's he that everything runs through them. Everything is catered to him. They built this whole specific team to try to make him like he's, you know, Larry Bird in his prime. And it's like, I don't know if he's a winning player. Can I.
Is it OK for me to say that if you listen and see fans? Well, two things. Fans. All I want to think, Bill, tell me my team is the greatest thing since sliced bread can be my favorite. Great interview venture off that big coming for you. And I agree with you on the whole situation. I do. I 100 percent agree with you on the whole situation. But man fans, because like in the first of all, their fans and their family, like Charles hates this guy, like, no, I don't.
I just told you the truth, but I'm not going to change. Well, I think we both see it the same way, Michael, with any player construction of a team is can I win basketball games? Can I win playoff rounds? And I think Trae Young is incredibly talented, like he's a really good offensive player. The way they're constructing and and thinking about that team is just not you're not going to win playoff rounds. You're just not.
And I don't agree with you 100 percent agree with you.
You know, it's funny, though, you mentioned because I when I did the studio show for ESPN for two years and I got a taste of what it's like to wear every basically every franchise fan base thinks you hate them. Yeah, we had a San Antonio Miami finals. And in both cities, the way we're setting up an offensive, why do you hate us so much? Why do you hate the heat? And then you going to say to Tony, it's like, why don't you respect Tim Duncan?
I'm like, so I hate both teams, like, you know, like so my favorite is early because who you don't pick in the series, I'm not going to pick this team. So once that I go to they love me. Once they go to they hate me. I'm like, first of all, I don't even give a shit who wins. Let's get that out the way. But I have to I get paid to answer the question. I'm will take this team and they do.
But you know who talks to me a lot about it? Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson. Hmm. Burns burns like, you know, they they do that they see, which is the worst fan base like in the history of civilization with everything good about my SDD too.
I hate your ass and I have friends when I'm in Alabama. I have friends like. Oh, we got we on CBS This week, Bernard Lundquist and Gary Danielson hate us, and I got Alabama fan man Bernard Lundquist and Gary hate us. And I'm like, what do you think that I said? I'm no burn. I know burn really well, Gary. I like I don't know him as well as I know, but they don't give a shit who wins as I know both of those guys and they don't give a shit about Alabama and Auburn football.
They're here to do their job. The fans hear what they want to fucking hear, Bill. Plain and simple. I felt that last year in the bubble, I was convinced Stan Van Gundy hated the Celtics in the Celtics Raptors series. And I texted Levert today I was going to stay and have against the Celtics. Did we not give him a job? And then he told Stan and stink up at me. But what I was like, look, I bet fans are irrational.
That's what makes fans great. So I get it. It's just kind of funny.
Like basically we're in this year and it is funny, right, when you're in it both ways.
But when when you're feeling like, oh, both fan bases think I hate them and these two teams are playing each other, like, obviously the only thing we're really rooting for is a great series when you're in the middle of it. Right. And that's like that San Antonio, Miami. That first year I the countdown was one of the great series of all time. You know, that was the real shot. That was Tim Duncan's incredible game seven.
Like, I didn't care who won. I just wanted awesome basketball.
You know, I always tell people who you rooting for us? I want this shit to be over as quick as possible so I can get the golf course and the series over the summer. I need to vacation. I mean, I don't care who wins. I got friends on both coaches on both sides. I like are some players on both sides. Like, I just want it to be over. If somebody wins four zip for one for two so I can get to the golf course and so I can go fishing, but I do.
I don't care who wins. I never get the fact that people think we care who wins. It makes me laugh every time.
Do you want an all star game to happen? I think it the way they're doing it is I think is unfair because a couple of things. So when we got out of the bubble, they're like, you guys got two months, three months off before we start again. They called me back three weeks later. Hey, we're going to start in a month. I want to work so that what these guys only got like six weeks on.
So they told them we're going to have two to three months of. They called us in three weeks and we're going to start before Christmas, so these guys, I'm like, man, that's a lot on these guys bodies. And I said, OK, we're going to give them 10 days off All-Star Game. I'm like, what capacity? Hey, the guys want to make money. So they got to come back. But they told me he's going to get an All-Star Game.
Then they come back like. A month ago, like, hey, we're going to lose too much money, we need to play the All-Star Game, I says, hey, let me tell you something that's going to go over not well at all. As these guys been playing basketball basically straight for a year, special teams that made it deep in the playoffs. The body's got to get a break at some point. And they're like, no, we need to play.
And I thought I knew when going over, well, see, a mistake I think the NBA is making is they're trying to rush everything so these kids can play in the Olympics. And yeah, who cares? Get rid of the Olympics seriously, and I'm really serious about this bill and they act like it's going to be the end of the world if we don't win the Olympics. I said, first of all, I think it'd be great if we didn't win the gold medal.
I think if some little country won the gold medal, it would make basketball so popular in that country. Right. That's. First of all, LeBron Kevin Durant, James Harden should not want to play in the Olympics anymore anyway. He should be thinking like college kids or guys who've been in league one year.
Yeah. Why are we sending college kids? Why are we even thinking about pros? These guys are work it out for the draft anyway. I think we proved our point and we're the best basketball playing country in the world. I don't I don't understand at all and I don't understand, you know, I think Adam Silver, I think he's done a better job than David Stern overall.
I think stuff like the like, whoa, whoa ho ho ho ho. Yeah. Now, that was just blasphemous. Well, I'm saying the last seven, eight years of Stern versus the first seven, eight years of silver, I think Silver has done a better job starting overall is more important, bigger figures, stuff like that.
I'm just saying Adam has had some doozies since he's been in office. But we're lucky to have Adam. But, man, he's had some doozies. He's had some serious doozies to handle going back to Sterling and things like that. Now we're in the middle of a pandemic. Hey, listen, it's a tough call, to be honest with you.
I don't think I don't think it's a tough call. Don't start games. Give the people 10, 10 days off, lose some money.
It's fine to take a while. Bill and I was having drinks with some friends the other night, and we're talking about this. The only people making money in the world right now are XOX. All the restaurants are losing money. All the businesses are losing money, all the NBA teams are losing money. All the NFL teams are losing money.
So these guys, man, I feel no one for real people in the world who have lost a job or lost a business, but they haven't killed in the NBA or NFL contract. And we're playing sporting events and these guys will all their salaries. And I tell them, you can't have your cake and eat it, too. Hey, there's nobody out here working now. You can only have one third of people at restaurants. These guys are honoring your contracts or you're making 30, 40 million dollars a year.
The dribble of stupid basketball. And the only way they can recoup some of their money is to play basketball. So I'm not going to cry for these guys, given how much money do you make for an all star game?
I can't imagine. It's like a game changer. It's one it's one night. They probably get fifty thousand dollars to the winner and thirty thousand dollars to the loser then.
Well, I think it's going to get caught. But our TV partners, which I want to listen, they want to I get it. So like I say, man, I tell you, man, y'all the only ones making money in the world now, everybody else is fired, got laid off or had to take a pay cut. Just go play basketball, I mean, you got you got TV partners who are being killed right now, which we're one of them ESPN can kill.
Are you proud that we just did an hour, 20 minutes without talking about LeBron, because I'm really I think it was a real achievement, especially in this media culture now, where it's like LeBron has to be discussed and fight. And then who do you think LeBron versus MJ, stuff like that? I don't want to go there. I'm just excited that we did it.
The number one. I appreciate it. Me too.
But, you know and I know we've been we've been together for a long time. I got a lot of love and respect for. You could keep doing your thing, my brother. You too.
I had one last thing for you before we go. This is just super quick fact. The sports car market has exploded.
Do you know what your rookie card, your nineteen eighty six fleer highest level meant, PSA 10 rookie card is now worth. What do you think, if you had to guess the price, what would you guess? Fifty thousand dollars now. Twenty thousand dollars. Twenty thousand, it was it was like four thousand dollars. Five thousand dollars a couple of months ago. And the last dance had this whole resurgence on the basketball card market. And now all the guys from all your rookie card, Jordan, Larry Bird, magic, it's all gone haywire.
I've only escalated that much in 40 years. Well, it's twenty thousand dollars for one car, it is a lot of money. Damn, I thought you'd be excited or disappointed. This is funny, you know, like so I don't know a lot about the car market. Well, let me rephrase.
I don't know anything about the car market, but that's pretty remarkable.
Well, today, it's funny when I was playing for the Suns. The God had me do an experiment where I went to college stores, yeah, I have to sit in there, I did some.
Oh, they've they forged the signatures. Yes. It because my my signature is I got it down to an exact science, but I went a bunch of stores I take only. Let's say we had 20 things, I only signed like seven a. That's hilarious. Yeah, the last dance, I mean, the last dance was good for you, too, because it made me feel old. I thought everybody knew the shit and you see everybody under 30, they're watching go.
Well, Michael Jordan was great. Wow. Barkley was really good. It's like, yeah, I thought I thought we all knew this. I thought this was already decided. But you realize that people under 30, they don't they're not going to go back and watch the old games. They had no idea. So I thought it was a really important, you know, documentary series for that standpoint.
I thought it was important for the simple fact that I forgot how much Michael got beat up and how much he overcame because the person beat him those first three times. And you see now if you kiss on the cheek, it's a flagrant foul and you saw it, you see like, damn I, I mean, because, you know, like, they were beating the hell out of him back in the day and he's like, says, no, we've got to get bigger, we got to get stronger.
He didn't whine. He didn't he didn't complain. He just said I got to get bigger and stronger. And even though I knew that a little bit during that time, you forgot how much you know, we had Magic Johnson on our podcast the other day and we have a podcast. And he says one of his biggest regrets was, remember the year they lost to the Celtics? He said. That's one of my biggest regrets, he says, remember when Mikhail clotheslined?
Randomly, he says, we lost that series because we spent the rest of the series trying to fight with ourselves instead of playing basketball. He said we had a better team than the subject. But once Kevin McHale clothesline Kurt, we spent the rest of the series trying to get even or trying to hurt one of those guys. And it caused us to series and to get back to Michael. And he never had retribution on those pistons. You just got to shot as free throws and man, some of those fouls.
You get suspended for 10 games on some of those fouls today. No question what might have got suspended for 20 games on that clothesline if he did it today, there was a worse foul later in the series where they just shove Mickey Maxwell from behind because it was like that kind of the revenge foul for the McKale Ram is saying he just shoves them into the basket support. And for some reason, everyone goes to the McKale Oremus. But the where the thing's just as bad that the thing Rodman did the Pépin was terrible, too.
There are some bad ones because that was just two free throws. That's real about it. Nobody got suspended.
I mean, it's crazy to think you remember remember Parrish when he punched Laimbeer and they kept him in the game and gave him this right in front of the ref? He literally hit it, hitting him five times.
And I remember what Bird would be a great bird. He came up swinging. Oh, my God.
That was the good old days, man, when you had a good one against laying bare once that that's a good YouTube fight where you actually had you had room to square up like it was a real fight because nobody had jumped in yet. And I got to say, first, dirty and scummy of a player that Lambert was he what? He didn't back down from fights.
You would see he would actually fight for himself.
He never wanted, but he was always getting hit. Go back and look at all the fights. He's a guy who started the fight. He was only getting five. You know, the pool party was always getting punched. Right. But he would at least seem like he was about to throw a punch. Yeah, you kind of kicked his ass.
It was really funny. I always joke when I was little, I was the person they call him the bad boy. But only two of them can fight right now. No. Dumars and I was there with only two tough guys on the team. Now, the other guy, James Evans of Bennett Johnson, with all those other players that would fight. Well, I say Sally Rodman, Mahorn, none of those guys would fight. Right. All right, Chuck, it was awesome to see you say say hi to the TNT guys.
Congrats on the twenty year anniversary. Coming up, big documentary on March 4th. What's the name of your podcast, by the way? A steam room in Erni. All right. Yeah. Don't ever invite me on or anything. It's not like I would be a good guest. Someone else's brother. You good to see it. Thanks for the time. I appreciate it. You're welcome, brother.
Take care. That's it for the podcast. Don't forget about the rewash. Trouble sleeping with the enemy already up. Coming to America. Coming later this week to podcast week on we watch. I'll be back on the street on Thursday. See that. On the.