Donnie Nelson: “We have daily conversations with pretty much everyone in the league and you’re always talking about the possibility. That’s kind of our job. There isn’t a single person that doesn’t come up in a discussion during the course of the season. So again, you’re always weighing those and measuring those opportunities. When something comes up you have to take a peak at it and if something comes up, one thing Mark Cuban isn’t is trigger shy.”
April 28, 2017 | 9:07 pm EDT Update
Multiple sources close to Bird say he is turning over the franchise to General Manager Kevin Pritchard because Bird doesn’t have the patience, the will, to fight the battle that looms ahead, a battle where the first salvos will be fired by someone else.
Bird has been of the belief that George is likely to leave the franchise as a free agent after the 2017-18 season, and he wasn’t encouraged by George’s public declaration in February: “I always want to play on a winning team,” George told ESPN Radio. “It’s frustrating just playing the game for stats or for numbers or to showcase yourself. Man, I want a chance to play for … a championship.”
Chris Miller: Beal at halftime told me he didn’t think Bazemore was a dirty player. #WizHawks #DCFamily #NBAPlayoffs
The truth can now be told: Yes, Kobe Bryant says, he did copy Jordan—”Damn near 100 percent of the technique,” he says. “Damn near 100 percent”— and Bryant in turn became the living example for his young peers, a conduit from the NBA’s greatest of all time to a new generation of stars.
“When you’re looking at players out there now,” Bryant tells B/R Mag, “you’re saying, ‘OK, there’s not a next Michael Jordan.’ It’s not about the surface stuff. It’s about: Are they approaching the game the way he did? … That is what it means to be a Michael Jordan—to be a Kobe. That is what we should be looking for.”
Everyone wanted to be the next Michael Jordan. But to be the next Michael Jordan was both a compliment and a burden, the ultimate aspiration and an unshakeable curse. “I want to be me, man,” Carter recalls of his sentiments as a springy 6’7″ guard out of UNC in the late ’90s. “I just don’t want to put that pressure on myself. In no way, shape or form I’m thinking that I am him, will be him or could be him. As soon as I walked in, my first year, that’s what you hear. For as cool as it may be, you don’t want it. You’re like, ‘No, thank you.'”