HoopsHype Clyde Drexler rumors

July 10, 2012 Updates

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. NBCSports.com

June 28, 2012 Updates

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.” Portland Tribune

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.” Portland Tribune

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.” Portland Tribune

“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.” Portland Tribune

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. NBA.com

June 27, 2012 Updates

In a video interview with the Journal, Johnson said he hadn’t been informed about Drexler’s comments, and registered his first response to them: “If that’s how he felt, then that’s how he felt. I think that Clyde was a guy that always fought for more publicity … a guy who thought he should deserve more credit. But if he felt like that, I’m OK with it. I’m not a guy who’s going to be upset that he said these types of things. Wall Street Journal

“I think that what I would say is that, [from] Clyde or anyone else, I didn’t want any sympathy. Only thing I wanted is that you treated me the same way that you treated me before you knew I had HIV. It was a beautiful thing that I was able to educate the world that a guy living with HIV could still go out there and play, and play at a high level. And then at the end of the day I was able to educate a league that didn’t know about HIV and AIDS. “You know a lot comes out after the fact. Here it is 20 years later, and now you want to make these comments? Twenty years later. And I know Clyde, so this is really funny you want to make these comments 20 years later.” Wall Street Journal

June 19, 2012 Updates
May 31, 2012 Updates
December 10, 2011 Updates

The Blazers have at least the mini-mid-level exception with which to sign another player — three years and more than $9 million. Buchanan wasn’t sure if it meant adding a guard or a player to the front line. He said they’ll have to wait for the first line of free agents to be signed — many of them at the regular mid-level exception beginning at $5 million a year — and see what talent remains available. All the Blazer players spoke reverently about Roy on Friday. Camby looked up at the string of retired numbers hanging from the rafters at the practice facility and offered, “His number sure belongs up there.” It will be soon enough. Roy is the third-greatest Blazer player of all-time, behind only Clyde Drexler and Bill Walton in terms of impact on the franchise. Portland Tribune

October 1, 2011 Updates
August 16, 2011 Updates
March 11, 2011 Updates

Yokohama Tire Corp. (YTC) is continuing its promotional tie-in with National Basketball Association (NBA) for a fourth year, renewing its sponsorship of the Boston Celtics for a fourth season and becoming a sponsor of the Houston Rockets. “The NBA agreement enables Yokohama to execute promotions designed to drive traffic to dealers,” said Shawn Denlein, Yokohama director of sales, consumer products. “One of the most popular and successful promotions is the ‘Home Team Pride’ program. During the March 12 through April 30 promotion period, consumers can receive an official Boston Celtic team shooting shirt or a Houston Rockets Clyde Drexler throwback jersey with the purchase of four Yokohama tires from participating dealers.” Tire Business

March 1, 2011 Updates

Team USA, by virtue of winning the world championship in Turkey last autumn, is the lone team to have already booked its spot. So who would win – Dream Team I or the likely 2012 crop? “I may be a little biased but I believe that was the best team ever assembled,” Drexler laughs. MVP 24/7

The owners plead poverty. The players cry foul. We won’t cave in, they insist. It has been back and forth for months between the NBA’s negotiators and the Players Association. Neither is keen to blink first. “The player salaries have gotten big but the owners are making a lot of money,” Drexler observes. “The revenue sharing is working. What they will have to do is find a way to come to a middle ground where both parties are happy and they can move on without any recourse.” MVP 24/7

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