James, who picked Carolina to win, said he had “heard” about what Newton did following the Panthers’ 24-10 loss to Denver in Super Bowl 50 – offering short, terse answers before and walking away after one of the questions. “I know it’s very difficult to play in one of the biggest games of your life and come out on the wrong side of it and then have to automatically answer questions,” James said after shootaround, ahead of tonight’s game against Sacramento. “And we also know as professionals that’s part of the business. We also know that you guys are part of the reason that help the game (become) as great as it is.
Lue would admit that this isn’t the ideal set of circumstances to get a job promotion. But he understands the dynamics and says it doesn’t change his focus on achieving the goals he’s set for this team. “Look, they ridiculed Jesus Christ, so I’m certainly no exception,” Lue told cleveland.com in an exclusive interview. “I don’t care what’s being said. I know how loyal I was to Coach Blatt and the people that know me understand that. I have no control over what people think. I have a job to do and I’m going to do my best.”
Contrary to popular belief, Lue and Blatt are on very good terms. “Me and Blatt are cool,” Lue said to cleveland.com. “We’ve spoken a few times since [he was let go]. I text him a few days ago, so it’s not what people want to think. To say I was doing things behind the scenes to get this job is crazy. This job? A team that’s in first place? Come on. “As long as Coach Blatt supports me, that’s all that matters.”
Even before the Celtics hung 46 first-quarter and 74 first-half points on his team, Kings coach George Karl gushed about them. Karl may be running low on supporters in Sacramento — at least in the team’s front office — but he’s winning over supporters in Boston (or maybe just atoning for his post-world championships verbal sparring with Paul Pierce back in 2002). “Coach Stevens does a great job of pushing buttons and keeping everyone highly motivated,” said Karl. “They’re a fun team. I watched three films on them. The Cleveland game — because we play Cleveland [Monday] — [and] I’ll tell you what, they have a chance against Cleveland.”