Morning Shootaround — Aug. 27

NEWS OF THE MORNING

Kobe, Shaq express regrets | MKG signs extension with Hornets | Stoudemire has high hopes for himself, Heat | Carrying on Lloyd’s legacy

No. 1: Kobe, Shaq express regrets Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant teamed up on the Lakers to win three championships, but their publicly contentious relationship sometimes seemed as through they won despite each other instead of because of each other. But in Shaq’s new podcast being released next week, Kobe Bryant visited as a guest, and as ESPN’s Baxter Holmes writes, the two looked back on their relationship and the dissolution of it with some regret…

In the podcast, “The Big Podcast With Shaq,” the two expressed regret over the feud.

“A lot of stuff was said out of the heat of the moment,” O’Neal said in an excerpt from the podcast that was played on ESPN Radio on Wednesday. “I guarantee I don’t remember a lot of stuff that they said, because I changed my thought process of, you know what, we won three out of four, what the hell are you all talking about? This is not really even a story.”

Said Bryant: “Here’s the thing, though. When you say it at the time, you actually mean it, and then when you get older you have more perspective, and you’re like holy… I was an idiot when I was a kid.

“To me, the most important thing was really, ‘just keep your mouth shut.’ You don’t need to go to the press with stuff. You keep it internal, and we have our arguments and our disagreements, but I think having our debates within the press was something I wish would’ve been avoided. But it did kind of create this whirlwind around us as a team with myself and Shaq and the press and the media that just put so much pressure on us as an organization.”

***

No. 2: MKG signs extension with Hornets The Charlotte Hornets and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist have supposedly been talking about a contract extension for a few days now, but yesterday they finally inked the five-year deal, which allowed both sides to meet the press. Hornets coach Steve Clifford has high goals for Kidd-Gilchrist, who explained to the Charlotte Observer‘s Rick Bonnell that he figured why wait to play for another contract?

Charlotte Hornets small forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist might have made some more off his second NBA contract by waiting until he reached restricted free-agency next July.

Instead he chose the security of a four-year, $52 million extension in a place and with a franchise that have become his home.

“Why wait?” Kidd-Gilchrist said at a Wednesday news conference to formally announce the signing. “I’m learning from the best. I don’t do this for the money.”

Perhaps not, but his second NBA contract will make the No. 2 overall pick in the 2012 draft fabulously wealthy. Also Kidd-Gilchrist has some upside protection in the contract’s terms. A source familiar with the deal said Kidd-Gilchrist has a player option for the final season, so if his improvement coincides with the anticipated spike in the salary cap, he could become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2019.

Kidd-Gilchrist would still be 25 – young by NBA standards – at that juncture.

Wednesday was a highly emotional day for Kidd-Gilchrist and his family. His mother frequently dabbed away tears during the news conference. He thanked numerous people including team owner Michael Jordan, the coaching staff and his family and agents.

“I’m learning from the best: MJ, Coach (Steve Clifford), Patrick Ewing, Mark Price,” Kidd-Gilchrist said.

Price, now coaching the Charlotte 49ers, was the Hornets assistant who worked diligently two summers ago to fix Kidd-Gilchrist’s jump shot. Price and Kidd-Gilchrist became so close through that experience that Kidd-Gilchrist skipped a team flight last season, flying to Washington later in the day at his own expense, to attend Price’s introductory news conference at UNC Charlotte.

Price returned that respect Wednesday, attending Kidd-Gilchrist’s news conference.

While Kidd-Gilchrist is still developing offensively (he averaged 10.9 points and 7.6 rebounds last season), he’s among the NBA’s top wing defenders. He told the Observer last season he aspires to be the best defender in NBA history, and didn’t back off that goal Wednesday.

“Aim for the stars; you’ll probably land on the moon. I have confidence in myself,” Kidd-Gilchrist said.

***

No. 3: Stoudemire has high hopes for himself, Heat Amar’e Stoudemire has spent a decade in the NBA, and gone from being a high-flying transition player into a more traditional, savvy post presence. After joining the Dallas Mavericks for their playoff run, Stoudemire signed with the Miami Heat, which he considers a return home. And as Stoudemire explained to the Associated Press, he believes the Miami Heat could have championship potential

He’s been texting and talking with Chris Bosh regularly. He’s considered himself close with Goran Dragic for years, going back to their time together with the Phoenix Suns.

Plus, he’s called Miami home for about seven years already.

So getting acclimated to being part of the Heat, that won’t be a big deal for the forward who will be entering his 14th NBA season – and first with Miami – when training camp opens in about a month. He knows many of his new teammates such as Dwyane Wade, Bosh and Dragic. He knows the city, and most of all he thinks that he can rekindle the All-Star form he had not long ago.

“We can be a really good team,” Stoudemire said. “No one thought that the Golden State Warriors would be champions this time last year. We knew they’d be a really good team, but no one thought they’d be world champions. With us, we know we’re a really good team. No one thinks we can be world champions, but you never know.”

Stoudemire went back to school on Monday, appearing with some other members of the Heat staff at an elementary school in Fort Lauderdale on the first day of the new academic year in South Florida.

He posed for photos and helped hand out some school supplies to ecstatic kids in what essentially was his first public appearance for the team since signing a one-year, $1.5 million deal last month. He also had to introduce himself to a few students; one asked Stoudemire if he was Bosh.

“I just live life,” Stoudemire said.” I try to enjoy it. I try to create positive energy when I can, I try to affect people in a positive way and just live life.”

For the kids, the new season of sorts started Monday.

For Stoudemire, while it won’t officially start for a few more weeks, prepping for 2015-16 in reality started long ago. He’s taking care of his body, but also said he believes that Heat President Pat Riley and coach Erik Spoelstra have the right formula to both extend the careers of veteran players while also getting the best from them.

“From playing against Miami, the thing that you learn is that they always have a competitive spirit,” Stoudemire said. “There’s an aura around here that everyone works hard, that you have to be in top shape which is great because I want to be in the best shape of my life going into this season. I want to surprise the world and have a very, very productive year.”

***

No. 4: Carrying on Lloyd’s legacy Back in 1950, Earl Lloyd became the first African-American to play in the NBA, as a member of the Washington Capitols. Lloyd passed away in February at the age of 86, but his son is working to make sure Lloyd’s legacy isn’t forgotten by attempting to have him commemorated on a postage stamp. As Donald Hunt writes in the Philadelphia Tribune, Kevin Lloyd and his family have a long process to go through

Lloyd is an excellent candidate to have his image on a postage stamp. Basketball legend Wilt Chamberlain was immortalized on two limited edition Forever postage stamps on Dec. 5, 2014 making him the first basketball player to have his likeness on a stamp.

The stamp process is quite grueling. The Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee is an organization appointed by the Postmaster General. The CSAC selects the stamp subjects for future consideration. The group submits them to the postmaster general who approves the subjects and designs for all U.S. postage stamps. The CSAC receives thousands of suggestions each year.

Nevertheless, the U.S. Postal Service has approved stamps for a number of athletes such as Jackie Robinson, Larry Doby, Althea Gibson, Jesse Owens, Wilma Rudolph and others.

In 2003, Lloyd was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass. for integrating the NBA.

“Earl Lloyd was a true pioneer in the game as a breakout player, a coach, and an administrator who at every level led the integration of the professional game,” said John Doleva, president and CEO, Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in a statement. “He had a great love and respect for the game and used his success and challenges within it to educate and motivate so many others to achieve at the highest level. His remarkable basketball career aside, he was also one of the greatest and most decent human beings to represent basketball and the game was fortunate to have him at its forefront.”

Letters supporting Kevin Lloyd’s campaign should be mailed to: Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee, 475 L’Enfant Plaza SW, Room 3300, Washington, D.C. 20260-3501.

***

SOME RANDOM HEADLINES: Jordan Clarkson is not yet eligible to represent the Philippines, but the process is underway … Russell Westbrook had fun at the Taylor Swift concert in Los Angeles … LeBron James sold his waterfront home in Miami …

24 Comments

  1. argentinan michael jordan says:

    they didn’t realize how each of each other was a legend at the time, thought only themselves was, but that’s cuz they lacked wisdom, so it happened. Then Detroit walloped them

    anyways, timmy and manu still > shaq and kobe

  2. Kome the Black Dumba says:

    kome realize he was an idiot but not now?

  3. no pain no gain says:

    Imagine if MJ and Pippen got into fight and separated, no way MJ wins six Championships. The most I see him winning is three.

  4. robbie says:

    kal “top 10 ever player Tim Duncan, the great Pop & other hall of famer Spurs (including Robinson, Parker & Gino) – 4 rings, 4 finals (may have caught some lucky breaks in 03 and 07)
    also of note:
    LeBron James – 2 finals and 2 mvps before it was even his turn yet..

    Kobe and Shaq came and conquered their era, period. … that they didn’t dominate more as being some sort of disappointing thing is just a result of America’s unhealthy MJ obsession…”

    OKKK. so, mj is meh, shaq and kobe mehhh, the spurs meehh, basketball..meeeh lol blablabla.. pure nonsense from a good old/new miami/cleveland fan(boy), nice lebron clowning

  5. Mark says:

    Something funny about all of this to me is the fact that shaq acts as if they would have won 6 to 8 titles together. I think if shaq didn’t leave maybe 05-07 would have been the last window of time for them to win together but I honestly don’t think they would have won 6 plus. Glad he left and gave Kobe the chance to prove he could win without shaq and vise versa

  6. Kal says:

    post-MJ 1999-2011 (pre LeBron takeover) era:

    Kobe/Shaq combined – 6 rings, 8 finals
    the not even close next bests:
    Boston Celtics (at least 3 hall of famers, one former MVP) – 1 ring, 2 finals
    Detroit Piatons (at least 3 hall of famers) – 1 ring, 2 finals
    Dallas Mavericks (at least one top 25 ever player) – 1 ring, 2 finals (may have had 1 more finals and/or ring without Dirk injury in 2003)
    top 10 ever player Tim Duncan, the great Pop & other hall of famer Spurs (including Robinson, Parker & Gino) – 4 rings, 4 finals (may have caught some lucky breaks in 03 and 07)
    also of note:
    LeBron James – 2 finals and 2 mvps before it was even his turn yet..

    Kobe and Shaq came and conquered their era, period. … that they didn’t dominate more as being some sort of disappointing thing is just a result of America’s unhealthy MJ obsession…

  7. Bermir says:

    Winning a national championship does not make you a world champion.

  8. Harriethehawk says:

    Both Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal are has-beens so I don’t ponder on what more could of happened as far as championship rings. Plus, as a non Faker fan who really cares?

    • Mark says:

      Why even post a reply if your not s lakers fan dude? You must be stupid to click on this link if you don’t care about. Plus way more people care about the “fakers” than whatever sorry team you root for.

  9. Mark from Bayarea says:

    One thing that I couldn’t understand was Lakers giving up Shaq, the most dominent center in NBA history.
    I know Kobe is a good player, and an entertainment for the Lakers, but Shaq was most valuable player in the league.
    Shaq almost equalled putting Pau Gasol, Ron Artest, Carl Malone, and Gary Payton together.
    That was how dominent he was when he was with the Lakers.
    Shame on Lakers’ management.
    No one wants to play for Lakers other than street thugs who try to cash out big time in NBA.

  10. aj says:

    A little late Kobe! Maybe, finally he realizes how many more championships he cost the lakers. Players like magic took pay cuts to be able to add guys to the roster and many others did this as well. Too many “me” players in the league now. This attitude is why no big names will join the lakers until after kobe retires next year. Please retire next year Kobe or at least sign with another team. I was glad to see Kobe struggle these last 3 or 4 seasons, “you reap what you soe”, You got your team Kobe and it only cost you several more championships. You are hearing this from a big time Lakers fan, just not a fan of the me players in the league now. No one exemplifies this more than Kobe. Retire.

  11. Joniel says:

    But still they dominate even they have feud or something. what if it didn’t happen or they have good relationship. They should have won lots of rings together.

  12. Singbuly Sabzoo says:

    It show that they were truly young and stupid. Many other super stars didn’t fight in the open like that. We can only imagine how many more rings they would win together.

  13. dustydreamnz says:

    1. Was just wondering the other day if they’d ever make up, sounds like the process may have started.

  14. Marty says:

    They probably should have regrets. No telling how many titles if not for selfishness.

  15. dwilly2silly says:

    Man no matter what the article is about kobe people always have something stupid to say. The article can read “kobe saves little boy from burning building” and i bet people would say stuff like “well he should of stayed inside that burning building”

  16. Nick says:

    On Kobe and Shaq. It boils down to this: They’ve matured. My father told me when I was a kid: “Most often it’s better to eep your mouth shut.” I’ve found that the more emotion involved, the better that advice. Whenever I heeded Dad’s advice I came out ahead because if I finally did open my mouth I usually had thought things through before speaking. I also learned that so very often, it never became worth my time to say anything at all! Boy, was Dad right!

    What’s that old saying?: “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than speak and remove all doubt.”

  17. egotrip says:

    note kobe is saying “But it did kind of create this whirlwind around us as a team with myself and Shaq and the press”

    yeah … i guess “myself” always come first with kobe 😀

    • Larry Robertson says:

      A person can only speak on and for self. You cannot say what another person, feels, thinks or believes until they show or tell you specifically. Believe none of what you hear, half of what you see. Everybody places self first even in the most selfless situations because, I find, we receive gratification even when we place others first. Is that not self serving?