Offseason Moves Don't Rattle Richardson
Heres the article:
Multitude of offseason moves don't rattle Richardson
By Art Garcia, NBA.com
Posted Aug 19 2009 10:33AM
A couple of jerseys would have been nice for the trouble. Not that Quentin Richardson considered being traded four times in less than two months trouble.
"The funny part about it was I didn't even get any of the jerseys," Richardson quipped Tuesday. "I have a Knicks jersey and obviously I have a Clippers jersey because I played there before. I don't have a Minnesota jersey and what was the other team?"
For the record, Memphis was the other "stop" on Q-Rich's summer tour.
It's easy to lose track when every time the phone rings, you wonder, "Where to now?" Military families don't move as much Richardson did. No sense in filling out those change-of-address forms in ink.
Funny, though, Richardson didn't take offense to his hot-potato existence. Going from the Knicks, his NBA home of the last four seasons, to the Grizzlies to the Clippers to the Timberwolves to, for now, the Heat, in less time than it takes to get a passport wasn't an issue.
Richardson, in a way, remained somewhat detached from the process. It wasn't him that was being bandied about in the never-ending search for cap relief. It was his $9.3 million expiring contract. He thought about how he would fit with every new team, but refused to view the next trade as some kind of personal affront.
"I'm the type of guy that's optimistic about everything, so for me it's just been wait-and-see," he said. "Every stop I made, I felt like I was going to be a part of that team at some point. Obviously, I got traded again.
"All it's been is a lot of paperwork. I haven't had to do a lot of moving around."
He's right. Richardson hasn't exactly been shipped from port to port, getting to know a new team only to have the rug pulled from under his high-tops. He's taken a physical in Memphis and that's about it. He's currently in Miami looking for a place in anticipation of his 10th season in the league.
Richardson isn't putting any additional pressure on himself. Stats or starts don't seem to matter for a 6-foot-6 swingman who averaged more than 17 points per game back in 2003-04. His time in New York was hit-or-miss, but Q-Rich remains a capable 3-point shooter who seems willing to fit in.
"That's how I go into every situation," he said. "I never go in saying I'm trying to average 15 points or do this or do that. My goal is to stay healthy and do whatever it is that the coach needs me to do to be successful. That's my ultimate goal."
The assimilation process should get a boost by Richardson's close friendship with native Chicagoan and Heat star Dwyane Wade. Richardson said that after his agent Jeff Wechsler told him that Miami was a possibility, he talked several times with Wade.
"We were real excited when the deal got done about the chance to play together," Richardson said. "We just want a chance to do better this season. Last year with the way he played, he elevated the team to an unbelievable level. I just want to be a part of that."
Wade, like Richardson, is set to become a free agent next summer. Miami's franchise player has stated his preference to remain in South Beach if the front office can build a legit contender around him. Heat president Pat Riley would first like an assurance that D-Wade will stay. If Richardson knows which way Wade is leaning, he's not telling.
"It's still too soon for all that," Richardson said. "We never talk about whether he's going or staying, we just talk about what's going on right now."
For his part, Richardson isn't sweating his next deal. He remains surprisingly grounded and genuinely thankful to be in his position. While it may seem as if he's unwanted -- four teams did move Richardson this summer -- he continues to focus on the big picture.
It's not about the jerseys.
"I look at it like this: There are a lot more people worse off than I am. OK, I got traded a few times, but at the same time my contract is guaranteed, I have financial stability at a time in the world where there is not a whole lot of financial stability going on," he said. "I'm blessed. I look at the bright side of all the situations I'm in. I have a best friend and he's going overseas to try to sign a contract that's nowhere near mine. So why would I be complaining because I got traded a few times?
"I'm in the NBA and living a pretty comfortable lifestyle compared to most of the world. I don't get caught up with being moved because of my contract. At the end of the day, I'm still playing the game I love to play. I'm still getting paid for it and I feel I have the best job ever. I would be playing basketball if I was getting paid or not."
I would think that he would be feeling a bit worse after being traded.
But apparently hes cool with it.