HoopsHype Al Jefferson rumors

March 27, 2014 Updates
March 26, 2014 Updates

Did the NBA move too quickly in eliminating the center position on the All-Star ballot? At least one NBA executive believes so. "I wouldn't call it a renaissance because they don't play the position quite the same way, but the position is stocked with young quality players," he said, ticking off Andre Drummond, DeMarcus Cousins, DeAndre Jordan and Jonas Valanciunas coming up behind Joakim Noah, Dwight Howard, Brook Lopez, Al Jefferson, Roy Hibbert and Marc Gasol. Bleacher Report

March 23, 2014 Updates
March 20, 2014 Updates

"We need to get this place jumping like it was in the LJ days, the Mourning days," says Jefferson. "It's on me to let other free agents know, 'Why not Charlotte?' " He stands on the corner of South College and East Trade streets, hooded Bobcats sweatshirt shielding him from the rain, passersby glancing curiously at the 6' 10" ray of sunshine brightening their afternoon commute. Big Al drops into a stance, extends his hulking right hand and demonstrates how to turn back the clock. SI.com

Clifford also addressed the more troublesome end of the court. "He told me I'm not the worst defender he's ever seen," recalls Jefferson, who took this as high praise and made up his mind before dessert to sign with Charlotte. He called Walker and said, "I'm not coming to lose." At that moment the Bobcats withdrew from the Andrew Wiggins/Jabari Parker/Joel Embiid derby that had been consuming every other also-ran. SI.com

March 16, 2014 Updates

Jefferson played two seasons in Utah and became an unrestricted free agent last summer, five years after the Wolves acquired him as the centerpiece in the Kevin Garnett trade and signed Jefferson to a $65 million contract. He thought the apparently unthinkable and signed last summer to play in Charlotte, a team so like some of the lousy teams he played on but in a place not all that different from where he grew up in Mississippi. “This probably feels more like home than any other city I’ve played in,” said Jefferson, who counts Boston, Minneapolis and Salt Lake City as his three NBA homes. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

March 12, 2014 Updates

51-year-old Michael Jordan could still DESTROY some NBA players ... despite the fact he hasn't played in the league in more than a decade ... so says Charlotte Bobcats big man Al Jefferson. Now that Al Jefferson plays for MJ's team ... we had to ask if he's ever challenged his boss to a little 1-on-1 when no one was looking. "Nah, he might beat me ... embarrass me man ... hurt my confidence!" Al could have a point -- after all, MJ was seen DUNKING at a shoot-around session a couple of months ago. TMZ.com

February 9, 2014 Updates

Charlotte Bobcats center Al Jefferson learned early on in this NBA life that learning the basketball basics late was far better than never learning them at all. Case in point? His rookie season with the Boston Celtics, when his coach at the time, Doc Rivers, gave the brutish big man DVD homework to study of a Hall of Famer who Jefferson – shockingly enough – had never heard of: the one and only Moses Malone. "At that time (2004), I really didn't know who Moses Malone was coming out of (Prentiss) Mississippi," said Jefferson, who was the Celtics' 15th pick in the first round that year. "I watched that DVD, and was like, 'Wow.' "Just to be able to have my game now represent the old-school game back in the day that at one point in time the world was used to and loved? I'm thankful." USA Today Sports

All in all, Jefferson – All-Star snub be darned – is quieting the many critics who questioned the Bobcats' decision to bring him aboard last summer. He remains a rare breed of offensive player, a dominant post presence whose scoring production (20 points per game) and rebounding (10.6) are at their highest since his 2008-09 campaign with the T-Wolves. In this day and age when centers have been stricken from the All-Star ballot and the Miami Heat have won back-to-back titles with a perimeter-oriented attack, Jefferson relishes his role as a relic. "The league has changed so much," he said. "It's more of run and gun, big men shooting jumpers and threes, so for me to still have that – guys like me, (the Sacramento Kings') DeMarcus Cousins, (the San Antonio Spurs') Tim Duncan – to still have that low-post presence game, where you demand a double-team and are a mismatch, I just think that's something that a lot of people don't have. It makes you very unique. I'm very proud of that." USA Today Sports

February 4, 2014 Updates
January 28, 2014 Updates

Then Schwartz suggested Jefferson make a visit to Charlotte to at least hear the Bobcats out. The rest has been a happy half-season of history for all concerned. “I met the coaching staff. That was the first impression right there,” Jefferson said of Steve Clifford and his assistants. “That showed me that MJ [team chairman Michael Jordan], Rod [Higgins, Charlotte president of basketball operations] and those guys, they went and got a great coach and staff. That let me know right there they were trying to turn this franchise around. “Then I looked at the young talent: Jeff Taylor, MKG [Michael Kidd-Gilchrist], Kemba Walker, Gerald Henderson. Bis [Bismack Biyombo], a great high-energy big. Brendan Haywood and [Jannero] Pargo, guys who have been around the league and know what it takes to win. You add a guy with my talent and the things I’m able to do on offense. And then you look at the East, I really thought that was the best decision for me.” NBA.com

January 1, 2014 Updates

But these Charlotte stats — and Jefferson’s contributions on that side of the court — might come as a huge shock to Jazz fans who spent the past three seasons bemoaning Big Al’s defense. Even Jefferson is somewhat surprised. “I never thought that my name would be a part of the being the anchor of one of the best top defensive team in the league,” he said. “That really makes me feel good, but it’s a team effort.” Deseret News

December 29, 2013 Updates
December 22, 2013 Updates
December 21, 2013 Updates

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