But not here to watch basketball, apparently. Smith didn’t bother to tune into the loss to the Sixers when he was suspended. “I didn’t watch the game,” Smith said. “When I’m not a part of the game, it’s hard for me to watch — and that’s whether I’m watching somebody else or watching my team. I don’t watch basketball in my spare time.” Smith also said he did not have any specific conversation with Damon Jones in the days that have passed.
December 3, 2021 | 11:35 am EST Update
There is optimism within the organization, though, that Lopez could return this season, per a team source. And while this is the 14th NBA season for the 33-year-old Lopez, Budenholzer told reporters the team does not believe this surgery has a chance to be career-threatening.
PJ Tucker was 1,500 miles away, on his way to FTX Arena in Miami for a game with his new team, but he had to pick up the phone to talk to you. He didn’t know that when his face, voice and highlights appeared in the championship video on ring night on Oct. 19 that Fiserv Forum rocked. But he’s heard you, felt you – and he’s looking forward to his return Saturday night to soak it all in once again.
“Hey, listen – you know what surprised me the most is how many fans are reaching out on e-mail, DM, everything, comments, talking about coming to the game,” he said in an interview with the Journal Sentinel. “It’s really … that part was the part that made me think back and really think about it even before I talked to you. Because you can’t, like, you can’t make that up. Guys go play for teams and win and people don’t care. People could care less. And I know that for a fact. “For the love I still get, even though I’m on an opposite team who their guys will battle this year and to still get that love, that’s what I’m saying about my experience in Milwaukee that nobody will ever understand: As short as it was, it couldn’t have been any bigger.”
It briefly left him searching for the right words as he tried to process what the city and its fans have meant to him. “I’ll always love Milwaukee,” he said. “I’ll love the people of Milwaukee forever. They embraced me so much from day one when I first got there to the day I left, they were always there, they always had my back. That’s not something you get right away. You don’t normally get the trust and the love of the city so fast. It was an amazing experience and journey.”
December 3, 2021 | 8:18 am EST Update
And Wall’s remaining money is significantly more than Walker’s was. For a Wall buyout to make any sense for the Rockets, Wall would likely have to give up even more than Walker did to the Thunder — and there’s next to no chance Wall could make that up in his next deal. At any rate, that hasn’t been seriously discussed by either side as a possibility. “It’s hard for him at this point in time, when your salary doesn’t equal what your production is,” a sympathetic front office person from another team said Wednesday. “That’s hard for him. It’s hard for a lot of guys.”