April 12, 2021 | 8:19 am EDT Update
Ohm Youngmisuk: Paul George says his toe and mental game is in a good place. “I just got into a good groove, rhythm, physical, mental space. I know what I need to do… I’ve been locked in and focused… I’ve just been at peace, I’m loving and enjoying the game. And the team is coming together.”
At 33, Curry is in the midst of the type of special relationship with one team and one region that few of today’s players can match. As Curry now sits 18 points behind Chamberlain ahead of tonight’s matchup with the Denver Nuggets (10 p.m. ET on ESPN), we caught up with three all-time greats from three different eras, who all understand the responsibility that comes with being the face of an organization for an entire career: Dirk Nowitzki, Reggie Miller and Jerry West. Passing Chamberlain will only solidify what the organization has known for years. “Look,” Miller said of Curry. “He is Mr. Warrior. He’s Mr. Warrior.”
Was there ever a point you felt like you might leave? Any superstar pitches to join forces? Reggie Miller: No. And if Michael Jordan ever would have called me and tried to sway me to come to Chicago, I would have told him to go f— himself! “I’ll be coming to see you on I-65 or whatever that highway is there. I’ll be down to see you.” I never came close to going anywhere else. Contemplating, or other teams sniffing around, like the Knicks, possibly. I already had a storied history against them, right? I couldn’t go there.
Dirk Nowitzki: The first time I really was a free agent I think was in 2010, right before we won the championship. I remember I was in town and I went over to Mark [Cuban’s] house. It was just me and Mark sitting there and I’m like, “What are we doing?” He’s like, “We’re going to keep plugging.” We were so close a couple years and so we were both kind of getting emotional about the stuff we’ve been through and it was just such a great conversation. And I said, “Listen, we’ll try four more years,” and then it was obviously super lucky that the first year out of that four-year deal I signed, we ended up winning the championship and obviously made it all worth it. But that was really the first discussion of a contract that I ever had.
West: Well, there’s one time that I really did want to leave, for sure. Looking back at that one particular era where an owner didn’t appreciate me and chose to sell me something that wasn’t true was not only hurtful, but more importantly made me angry. And so I did not want to play for this team, simply because of this owner. And I loved Los Angeles.