HoopsHype Tracy McGrady rumors

September 17, 2013 Updates
September 14, 2013 Updates

He didn’t stay, of course. McGrady, who grew up in tiny Auburndale, Fla., fled to nearby Orlando only months after his 21st birthday, and his return trips to the Air Canada Centre would be accompanied by the vicious boos of a jilted populous. But more than 13 years later, in the days since he announced his retirement from the NBA last month at age 34, McGrady has been looking back fondly on his time in the NBA’s Canadian outpost. “In hindsight, looking back, obviously I wish I had stayed in Toronto,” McGrady was saying in a recent telephone interview from his home in the Houston area. “There’s no doubt we could have contended for a championship. I think about that often. But if ‘if’ was a fifth, you know?” Toronto Star

“There’s no doubt we would have won that series if I would have been there,” McGrady said. “We had incredible camaraderie. You can’t duplicate that, man. Big brothers, little brothers — we had a mix. And me and Vince were in the perfect situation. You’ve got the two young superstars and you’ve got these old vets. They were our force field. They protected us from anything that happened on that basketball court. They did all the dirty work. And all we had to do was just concentrate on putting the ball in the hoop and guarding who we were guarding. It was just such a great time in my career. “Had I been a little older and wiser and knew what was ahead of me, I would have stayed, no doubt, with those guys. But that was some of the best times of my life, man. Being with (Charles) Oakley and Kevin Willis and Antonio Davis, Muggsy (Bogues), Dell Curry, Dee Brown. Man. I still talk to a lot of those guys to this day. Because I appreciated how they looked out for me. They were all professionals.” Toronto Star

September 5, 2013 Updates

Tracy McGrady was one of the most elite scorers in the NBA during his relatively short-lived prime. He averaged 26.1 points per game over an eight-year span with the Orlando Magic and Houston Rockets, but injuries sent his career downhill in a hurry. Despite that, T-Mac recently hinted that he believes he was as good as Kobe Bryant during his best years. “Numbers don’t lie. I was in the conversation of being one of the best in the league,” McGrady told FOX Sports Radio’s Jay Mohr Sports on Wednesday. “Whether I was better than Kobe, or he was better than me … I was in the conversation and it didn’t matter at the time. I was playing at a high level and was very confident when I was on the court.” Larry Brown Sports

September 4, 2013 Updates

Another team denies inviting T-Mac for the new season. Sichuan Whale is mostly thought as the new CBA team in the next season, and some reporters said the team will sign T-Mac for their first CBA season, but the GM of Sichuan told hupu on the phone that they didn't contact T-Mac. In July, T-Mac went to Sichuan for an exhibition game, and he did some training in Sichuan's arena. Sichuan GM told Tracy, "If we play in the CBA the next season, Will you join us?" But it was meant as a joke. hupu.com

September 3, 2013 Updates

In the wake of Tracy McGrady's announcement last week of retirement from the National Basketball Association (NBA), rumors and speculations of him joining a Chinese team keeps popping up in sports sections. The Sichuan Jinqiang Whale from the minor National Basketball League (NBL) have stayed in close touch with the former NBA superstar, and is "highly likely" to bring him in if the team cracks into the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) next season, Chengdu Business Daily reported on Tuesday, citing sources from the club as well as McGrady's team. China Daily

August 31, 2013 Updates

Tracy McGrady: Hell of an article actually.. Great job @BillSimmons http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/9616069/the-unfortunate-tale-t-mac?ex_cid=facebook … Twitter

August 30, 2013 Updates

Tracy McGrady? He's the guy who never made it to the second round. And yet, just two weeks ago, Kobe Bryant told Jimmy Kimmel in front of 5,000 people that McGrady was his toughest opponent ever. Not LeBron, not Wade, not Pierce, not Durant. T-Mac. Was that a passive-aggressive dig at LeBron? Did Kobe really mean it? After McGrady retired this week, I couldn't resist texting Kobe to ask him. Was it true? Was T-Mac really the most talented player Kobe ever played against? His response: "No question." Grantland

But McGrady wasn't a natural leader. His personality never matched his talents, Morey believed, which wasn't necessarily a bad thing. For his first three Houston seasons, it fell upon coach Jeff Van Gundy to supply that leadership — by default — and as Morey accurately points out, you never want your team drawing its entire personality and toughness from someone wearing a suit. (Even in Chicago, where the Bulls assumed Tom Thibodeau's rugged personality over these last three years, that wouldn't work if lunch-pail guys like Joakim Noah and Jimmy Butler weren't involved.) After Morey fired Van Gundy before the 2007-08 season, new hire Rick Adelman was hoping McGrady would take on a bigger leadership role. Grantland

Adelman was a more laid-back coach, Morey explains, someone who'd rather delegate to his players. So they met with McGrady to tell him that they needed his help. What happened? McGrady politely turned them down. He just wasn't wired that way, he told them. "So who did everyone consider the team's leader during your 22-game winning streak?" I asked Daryl. "Probably Chuck Hayes," Daryl said. Grantland

"Your best player has to set the tone, without question," Van Gundy explains. "If he doesn't do that, then it has to be the head coach. But it's better if the player has it. Tracy was never a leader, but he was a helluva basketball player. If you coached him or coached against him, you would have a much different view. McGrady made people better — he was a great, great passer. Wasn't a great shooter, but he was a great scorer, could guard, pass, was smart, rebounded. He could do everything. I mean, even Bryant came out and said some nice things … it's not like Kobe Bryant goes out and blows smoke up people's ass." Grantland

August 29, 2013 Updates
August 27, 2013 Updates

Butch Carter, who coached McGrady in Toronto, remembered him as a prodigy who changed his presumptions about talent development. “Tracy convinced me that some guys don’t need to go to college to be pros,” Butch Carter said. “He was totally committed to his craft. ... By the second half of his third (and final) season in Toronto, he was consistently the best player in practice.” That’d be the best player on the Raptors including Vince Carter. “T-Mac was just awesome for me,” Butch Carter said. “Considering where Tracy McGrady came from and what he accomplished, it’s miraculous. Because Tracy had none of the support systems guys normally get to give them a chance. He was taken out of a small Florida hometown, shipped off to (a prep school in) North Carolina when he’d never been away from home. And then shipped to a foreign country. Tracy McGrady is the first high school player that had to play in a foreign country.” Toronto Star

“At his peak, I defy anybody that played against him, coached against him, played with him or coached with him, to tell me he wasn’t an all-time great,” Jeff Van Gundy, who coached McGrady in Houston, said in a phone interview. “People are going to look at the lack of playoff success and say, ‘He wasn’t a winner.’ But so much of whether you win or lose in the playoffs is based on who you play with, who you play against, and health.” Toronto Star

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