On the upside, Amar'e Stoudemire likes New York's new uniforms. "I love them," Stoudemire said. "These jerseys are extremely clean." Stoudemire looked slimmer than usual and was encouraged with his highly publicized low post workouts with Hakeem Olajuwon. But for the most part, Stoudemire was uncharacteristically grumpy and short with the media. He gave one-word answers to several questions, especially about his health and whether he has become a forgotten man on the team. Stoudemire is coming off one of his worst seasons production-wise, one which ended with him famously cutting his hand by punching a fire extinguisher. He is upset that the media continues to discuss his self-inflicted wound.
This does not represent a major setback for Bynum, but it does mean he will miss all of training camp and perhaps all of preseason play. For a team with a number of new players, and with the plan being to run the offense through Bynum, it does mean the Sixers won’t be ready to hit the ground running when the season starts at the end of the month. Those precious early games that can dictate playoff position come April will be even more challenging, and that could spell trouble for Philly.
Thankfully, even though there is a Beijing-Shanghai rivalry, an international incident was avoided. The fans in China at least appreciated Mourning, now a Heat vice president, for using the Mandarin word for hello, and the Miami players sure got a kick out of it.
It ramped up some, Wade said of his popularity. I can sense people were excited to call me one of their own in a sense of signing with their brand. Li-Ning is their brand with their professional Olympic athlete. The first to do it. I could sense the excitement. My job is to continue to learn the (Chinese) culture, continue to become a part of their culture and try to put out a good product that they want to see and they want to wear.
But Irving isn’t going to be making a habit of such goose eggs. In fact, after winning Rookie of the Year last season, Irving is looking to come in and take his game to another level, and he uses two words to describe how he’s going to do that: patience and efficiency.bsgf4343
“Last year we were just thrown into the fire right away. We didn’t have a true training camp, and this year everybody has a better chance of getting into shape going into the season,” Irving said. “You definitely get a better feeling of familiarity with each other and just get some continuity on the offensive and defensive end.”vbsfg3422332
Playing with the Spurs, which included one start this fall, Curry averaged decent numbers: 8.4 points and 3.6 rebounds per contest. As a starter, against the Atlanta Hawks, Curry finished with 11 points and eight boards in 25 minutes of action.
“I thought he did OK,” Carlisle said. “He’s a really good offensive player around the basket. Defensively, there are some things we have to work with him on. In the pick-and-roll defense, he tends to stay back and zone up and our coverage is more aggressive. It’s a mindset; just something he’s got to get use to, but he did some good things.”
The other part is you just can’t make a three and give up a three at the other end every possession. He is learning, believe me. This doesn’t mean Terrence Ross is not going to play for us or not a part of it. He is going to be big for us. He is our future, but right now he is just a typical rookie and you could stop every play for him [to teach]. He is learning.”