Clyde Drexler RumorsAll NBA Players
“It is so sad,” said former Portland teammate Clyde Drexler, his voice cracking over the telephone. “It is a huge loss for the Portland community. He was the greatest guy, the nicest friend, teammate and brother. He was loved by everyone. We will all miss him. He just cared so much. This is unbelievable.”
After finishing his playing career he served as an assistant coach in the NBA and has worked for the Trail Blazers. When he left the Blazers in 1995 he was at or near the top of virtually every important statistical category, including games played, minutes, points, rebounds, blocked shots and assists. He is survived by wife Teri and their four children.
Jerome Kersey, whose relentless and fearless style of play made him one of the most beloved Trail Blazers players, died unexpectedly Wednesday at Legacy Meridian Park Medical Center in Tualatin. He was 52. Kersey played 11 of his 17 NBA seasons in Portland, the starting small forward on some of the most celebrated Blazers teams. While Clyde Drexler provided the flair, and Terry Porter the big shots, it was Kersey who often created those opportunities by diving on the floor, or fighting for a rebound. And when it came time for him to be in the open court, his speed, size and leaping ability made him one of the more powerful dunkers in franchise history.
Clyde Drexler is a married man … again … TMZ Sports has learned. We know … the NBA Hall of Famer officially tied the knot to his girlfriend Tonya during a ceremony in Texas in early March. As TMZ Sports previously reported, 51-year-old Clyde met Tonya a couple of years ago through his old NBA pal Dominique Wilkins … and they filed for a marriage license in Texas back in February.
NBA All-Stars Paul George of the Indiana Pacers, Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers and John Wall of the Washington Wizards headline the list of dunkers in the 2014 Sprite Slam Dunk (#SpriteSlam), taking place during State Farm® All-Star Saturday Night (#StateFarmSaturday) at Smoothie King Center in New Orleans on Saturday, Feb. 15. Harrison Barnes of the Golden State Warriors and Ben McLemore of the Sacramento Kings fill out the Western Conference teams, while reigning Sprite Slam Dunk champion Terrence Ross of the Toronto Raptors completes the East roster. This year’s event will feature the participants competing as a team — three players representing the Eastern Conference and three players representing the Western Conference — in an above-the-rim two-round format. In a significant first in the event’s history, the competition will tip off with a Freestyle Round where the dunkers for each conference will have 90 seconds to showcase as many dunks as they want. At the conclusion of the Freestyle Round, the panel of judges will then choose a winner by voting “East” or “West.” The winning conference will earn the advantage of deciding whether its dunkers will dunk first or second in the head-to-head battles that take place in the Battle Round.
In the first quarter of the Miami Heat’s Friday game against the Sacramento Kings, LeBron James took over sole possession of 30th place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list, surpassing Larry Bird with this dunk: Later in the Heat’s 108-103 overtime loss to the Kings, James passed Gary Payton for 29th in NBA history, upping his total to 21,819. Next up for the four-time MVP is Clyde Drexler, who had 22,195.
Current Rockets players Isaiah Canaan and Chandler Parsons along with Ron Harper, a five-time NBA champion, and Clyde Drexler, a member of the original Dream Team that won the gold medal in the 1992 Olympics, conducted a basketball clinic for 100 wide-eyed students of the school. “First of all it’s great to be here. The NBA is always in the community all over the world. And anytime we come it’s always a great feeling,” said Drexler, who won a championship with the Rockets in 1995. “It’s unbelievable. I’ve never seen anything like this,” marveled Parsons, a third-year forward who is expected to have another impactful season this year.
Daryl Morey: Was gr8 meeting with @Dwight Howard. Hakeem & Clyde there made it obvious how @Dwight Howard & @James Harden could be the next gr8 big/wing combo
Mark Berman: NBA sources: Hakeem Olajuwon will not be the only Hall of Famer meeting w/Dwight Howard on behalf of Rockets Sunday. So will Clyde Drexler.
This year’s rosters include celebrities from film, TV, and music. Reigning 2012 Sprit NBA All-Star Celebrity Game MVP Kevin Hart (“Real Husbands of Hollywood”), will look to defend his title alongside stars like Grammy Award-winner Ne-Yo (R&B/pop); Nick Cannon (“Real Husbands of Hollywood”); Josh Hutcherson (The Hunger Games); Trey Songz (R&B Singer/Actor); Usain Bolt (Olympic gold medal sprinter); Arne Duncan (Secretary of Education); Terrence Jenkins (“E! News,” Anchor); Common (Rapper/Actor); John Schriffen (ABC News Correspondent); Ryen Russillo (ESPN Host); NBA Legends Dikembe Mutombo (eight-time NBA All-Star), Clyde Drexler (ten-time NBA All-Star), Sean Elliott (two-time NBA All-Star), and Bruce Bowen (NBA legend); WNBA stars Tamika Catchings ( Indiana Fever) and Maya Moore (Minnesota Lynx).
The NBA announced the official lineup of the 2013 NBA All-Star Celebrity Game, which will take place at the Sprint Arena on Friday, Feb. 15, during NBA All-Star Jam Session at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston. NBA All-Stars James Harden of the host Houston Rockets and Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder will serve as the West and East team coaches, respectively. For the ninth straight year, ESPN will televise the game beginning at 7 p.m. ET. Fans can also view the game through NBA GameTime from Sprint application, available on Android and iOS, as well as via WatchESPN on computers, tablets, and phones.
But Glide, most people are saying the Suns will not be a playoff team and ESPN’s pundits figure on them being the second-worst team in the conference. “What?!” Drexler said with slightly less shock than when Jake O’Donnell ejected him for protesting a second-quarter foul in a 1995 playoff game at Phoenix. “Are you kidding me? If they don’t get the fourth or fifth playoff spot, I’m not standing before you. They’re big. They’re athletic. They know how to play.”
Schonely has “RIP CITY,” on his personalized DMV license plates. Maybe you’ve seen his familiar Cadillac driving on the freeway, or walked up on it in a parking lot and snapped a photograph beside those plates. I drove up upon Schonely and his wife cruising on I-205 once, pulled alongside, rolled down the window, and honked. Without hesitation, or taking his eyes off the road, Schonely instinctively honked back and waved. He never did look over. “People honk every so often when they see me,” he told me, days later. He likes that you remember him. And Schonely is delighted when people come up and talk about their favorite broadcasts or how they feel young again when they hear his voice. Legacy is big for a man who built the reputations of so many others. “It’s one of the biggest highlights for me. No. 1 is the championship in 1976-77. There was Clyde, and Maurice Lucas,” he said, “I guess I must have made my free throws.”
Charles Barkley: “Hey, we all want to be compared to Michael, but we’re not. Clyde was a great player, but there was always that jealousy of Michael. That was one of the incidents and things about the Dream Team, Clyde was trying to play like it was Game 7 against Michael, and that’s probably not a good idea. When Michael is driving his kids to school, he thinks it’s Game 7.”
Charles Barkley said Thursday that he likes Clyde Drexler and considered him a great player, but Barkley also felt that Drexler had a jealousy problem on the 1992 “Dream Team.” “I think Clyde has always been jealous of Michael (Jordan), to be honest with you,” Barkley said on “The Waddle & Silvy Show” on ESPN 1000. “I think he’s always wanted to be compared to Michael.
Charles Barkley said Thursday that he likes Clyde Drexler and considered him a great player, but Barkley also felt that Drexler had a jealousy problem on the 1992 “Dream Team.” “I think Clyde has always been jealous of Michael (Jordan), to be honest with you,” Barkley said on “The Waddle & Silvy Show” on ESPN 1000. “I think he’s always wanted to be compared to Michael. “Hey, we all want to be compared to Michael, but we’re not. Clyde was a great player, but there was always that jealousy of Michael. That was one of the incidents and things about the Dream Team, Clyde was trying to play like it was Game 7 against Michael, and that’s probably not a good idea. When Michael is driving his kids to school, he thinks it’s Game 7.”
MAHONEY: In the vein of controversy, I know Clyde Drexler’s comments in the book about Magic and HIV picked up some traction on Deadspin and through some other outlets — so much that Clyde came out to publicly deny the authenticity of the quote. I know you’ve covered that saga a bit on your blog, but was Drexler’s after-the-fact denial something that surprised you at all, or given the quote, did you kind of see it coming? MCCALLUM: I kind of saw it coming because I’m sure he didn’t remember exactly what he said, and then the context in which it was put — that the Dream Team was sort of waiting for him to die — all of a sudden it hit like a ton of bricks. I’m sure Clyde honestly thought that I made stuff up. We’ve talked since then and I sent him the transcript. I didn’t send him the tape — I can’t let the tape out of my possession unless I have to — but I sent him the transcript trying to explain that I thought it came out clearer in the book. But his reaction, I suppose, didn’t surprise me. After he saw the transcript, he still was saying that I was fabricating quotes but I think he understands I didn’t, and I just hope the whole thing is clear in the book because I did not feel good about it. As much as people think ‘Oh wow, controversy sells books, blah, blah, blah,” I did not feel very good about it.
“He’s trying to ruin a 30-year friendship I’ve had with Magic. I’ve been one of his biggest supporters in the game of basketball, and probably his biggest fan. I have nothing bad to say about Magic, ever.” Drexler conceded that he made one comment to which he was quoted. “I said, ‘People didn’t know what would happen with Magic. If I’d known he was going to live that long, I’d have tried harder to get the MVP (of the All-Star Game) in 1992,’ ” he said. “But I was laughing, and I was kidding. Jack should have known that. I would never comment on someone’s mortality. That’s not for us to do. Jack lost he mind when he put that out there.”
McCallum goes into length discussing the Drexler interview in a pair of blog posts on his Website, JackMcCallum.net, and posted the transcript of the aforementioned part of the Drexler interview. In a Thursday conversation with me, he explained where he felt Deadspin’s Jack Dickey erred, stressing he believes the writer took it out of context. “Deadspin took the idea that everyone on the Dream team felt sorry for Magic because he was going to die,” McCallum said. “Clyde didn’t say that and I didn’t write that. He was talking about a league-wide perception. “No. 2, they seemed to cast it as if Clyde resented Magic on the Dream Team. That’s not true. Clyde talked about some other guys who shouldn’t have been on the Dream Team, but not Magic. My impression was Clyde did not resent him being on the team.”
I connected with McCallum Thursday morning. He had already engaged in several discussions with Drexler on Wednesday. McCallum said he has Drexler’s comments – taken from a two-hour visit at Clyde’s Houston home more than a year ago – stored on his recorder. “If anybody thinks I feel good about this, I don’t,” McCallum told me. “I don’t think I took things out of context. The Deadspin excerpt did, and I’m sorry about that. But I stand behind the quotes that are in my book.”
You can imagine Drexler’s response as he answered questions about his comments from friends and media Wednesday. “Jack is using me to sell his books,” he told me late Wednesday night. “I don’t get it. Every statement he made is completely false. I never said any of that. Not any of it. Not even close. Why would he make up statements? You’d have to talk to Jack about that.”
Drexler said in a phone interview on Wednesday that the quotes attributed to him are “totally ludicrous.” In a statement released through the Houston Rockets, Drexler says he would’ve never said those things and that Johnson is one of his closest longtime friends.