STAT tells KTAR in Phoenix (via SRI) that he doesn’t care for those who think he’s playing well simply because he wants a new, giant deal: “On what he emphasized improving on this season: ‘I said it before the season, my emphasis this year was to improve defensively.  That was my goal to come back as a better defensive player.  With me not being able to play all summer, to have any time to work on it, I think through training camp, through playing, and through experience this season, it allowed me to improve after every game.  I think that’s where I’ve improved the most this year is defensively.’ On what he would say to the people who believe he is playing this way because he wants a max contract: ‘I would say they are simply retarded and they haven’t been watching my career at all since I’ve been in the league.  Ever since I’ve been in the league, I’ve been improving every single summer.  Getting myself in total top shape, focusing on winning a championship, getting through those playoffs runs, and coming back with force and reckless abandon.  I’ve been improving every single year, after the All Star break I’ve been improving, so if they think I’m just playing for a contract, they’re out of their minds.”’