HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — We’re getting close to crunch time, trade deadline style.
The amount of faulty information that permeates every corner of the basketball universe this time of year is off the charts and has been known to infect even the most responsible of observers.
And that means more names, more rumors and in turn, more foolishness for us all to sort through.
Hawks forward Josh Smith was added to the list of players that have gone on record as asking for a trade request, joining his good friend and the best man in his wedding, Dwight Howard (he was last season destroying the Chicago Bulls on TNT last night). Another member of Smith’s wedding party, groomsman Rajon Rondo of the Boston Celtics, has also seen his name surface, disappear and resurface again in trade talks at least a dozen different times this season.
This notion that Smith and Rondo could be swapped for each other is laughable, when you consider that they played together their senior season at Oak Hill Academy and have been tight ever since. If anything, it makes sense for them to be lobbying to play together (in Boston?) as opposed to being traded for one another.
But that’s just more fuel for the trade-deadline rumor fire.
One thing is clear, Derrick Rose and Dwight Howard probably won’t be teammates anywhere else but All-Star weekend (provided Howard remains in the Eastern Conference) and at the Olympics.
They both expressed their opinions on the trade deadline drama. Rose has had enough of it all, by the way, telling the Chicago Tribune:
“It definitely is getting old,” Rose said of being asked about Howard. “I’m sick and tired of hearing it. Chicago, marketing-wise is a great city. If someone chooses to come here, they definitely could.
“But I’m cool with the teammates I have. We have a winning record. It ain’t like we need to change anything. It’s not up to me. It’s up to the front office.”
There are zero indications Howard will add the Bulls to his list of teams with which he would sign an extension or that the Bulls are pursuing him.
“If it’s not about the Bulls, I really couldn’t care less about it,” Rose said.
Howard sounded off as well, citing the weather and other issues as to why Chicago isn’t on his preferred list, telling the Chicago Sun-Times:
“Nah, it’s pretty cold here,’’ Howard said when asked about the Bulls rumors.
Nothing says warrior-poet like a player who doesn’t want to chase a ring because of lake-effect snow.
As far as playing alongside the league’s 2010-11 MVP, Howard again couldn’t help but let his true colors shine through.
“I don’t think there’s a player in the NBA who wants to be a nobody,’’ Howard said. “I think everybody wants to be that guy to take the last shot, be that guy that everybody is leaning on for whatever reason, and I don’t think there’s any problem with wanting to be that guy. I’ve been that guy for this team since I’ve been here.’’
Well, that takes care of that!