"Kobe said he was gonna set the tone to start the game …

“Kobe said he was gonna set the tone to start the game and he said, ‘I’m running through Pau’s chest’,” LeBron James revealed in the documentary. “First play of the game I’m running through Pau Gasol.’ And we was like, ‘What?'” Dwyane Wade added. “He said, ‘First play of the game, I know what they’re gonna run.’ And he knew Pau was gonna be the last screen and he said ‘I’m running through him.'” As predicted, Bryant intentionally ran right through Gasol hard on Spain’s first possession and received a defensive foul. The entire US team started believing Kobe’s words instantly, James recalls. Gasol himself revealed that Kobe visited the Spanish national team in the Olympic Village before the game. The big man believes it was a part of the plan to soften both Pau and the entire Spanish squad.
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November 29, 2022 | 9:13 pm EST Update

James Jones on Chris Paul's return: 'He's close'

Then Jones addressed the status of Paul, who hasn’t played since Nov. 7 at Philadelphia where he injured the foot in the first half of a loss to the 76ers. “Chris, he’s close,” Jones said. “He’s coming back. He’ll be back. I can’t tell you he’ll be back (Wednesday). He’s been looking good and we’re still taking the long view with him. From Day 1, we’ve said that when our guys are eligible to play, when they’re available, they’re completely available. No restrictions. Nothing mentally, physically, to hold them back. So he’s getting there. And once he gets there, you’ll know.”

James Jones set to step away from day-to-day duties to focus on big-picture objectives?

Moving forward, Jones says he’ll be stepping away from more of the day-to-day whirlwind and delegating some of those responsibilities in order to focus on more big-picture objectives. For the time being, Jones is not eyeing any personnel changes like hiring a new general manger to take on some of his current duties. But he didn’t completely shut down the idea for further on down the line either. “I’m not focused on that right now,” he said. “I mean, if that happens, it happens, but for me right now, it’s getting us to the All-Star break.”
The Suns currently are atop the Western Conference. They’ve won their last five games. “This team is special,” Jones said. “There aren’t any challenges that are daunting to us. If it’s injury, if it’s external situations, external factors, it’s back-to-backs, tough one-point losses. They don’t affect our psyche. Our guys all come in, they work and they show up in big moments. So I’m proud of this team just because I know these guys and I get a chance to see them every day. They don’t get a chance to display their grit and resiliency, but they’ve been able to do it for the first 20 games and we’ve been better for it.”
Jones admitted he’s obviously keeping tabs on the latest with the ownership situation, but for now, Crowder is the pressing issue at hand. Unfortunately, little has changed over the last few weeks, as Jones said there’s “nothing new” with Crowder. “Just haven’t been able to get a deal done,” he said. “It’s the NBA, right? Timing, there are there aren’t any perfect times. Like, there’s no window where they say ‘Hey, all deals are done here.’ We have natural deadlines, like the trade deadline, where you usually have a flurry of deals, but other than that, it’s just finding the right fit, and we just haven’t been able to find that yet.”