Dirk, on what’s going wrong:
“We don’t play with a lot of emotion. Collectively, we have to have more fire. We have to get after them more. We have to just go for it and compete on both ends of the floor. We have to let it loose.”
Translation: I am a proud German national who just uttered the words “we have to let it loose.” That alone shows how strained things have gotten. Either that or I am working on a top-secret cola commercial to air in my native land, and this phrase just slipped out at the wrong time. My apologies to the investors, if they happen to get this channel on their SkyJet.
Arenas, on what’s gone wrong:
“There were plenty of times where I just wanted to say, ‘[Forget] the offense,’ and go out and do what I do best. But that’s not basketball right now. They’ve been winning passing the ball around right now, and that’s what we have to do.”
Translation: When we’re down 0-3, I want you all to go back and smell the smugness rising off of this quote. Until then, I’m pleading frustration, innocence, and self-inflicted confusion.
Bibby on Boston fans:
“They were kind of loud at the beginning. But a lot of these fans are bandwagon jumpers trying to get on this now. I played here last year, too [with Sacrameno] and I didn’t see three-fourths of them. They’re for the team now and they might get a little rowdy, but that’s about it.”
Translation: I’m a real proud individual, and we’re going to get swept, so I had a session with a sports psychologist. He really made me see things different, told me that to keep myself steady I had to start picking my battles. The playoffs are all about fighting for your life, not backing down, and making your name know. I learned that with the Kings. So while we’re getting chumped down on the court, I’ve chosen to look up into the stands and take on these fans like WHAT.
“That’s Mike Bibby speaking his mind. I wouldn’t say it’s the smartest comment, but it’s Mike Bibby.”
Translation: He was a legend in his day. You may not know this, but yeah, we all think that.
Detroit native Willie Green, on playing in Detroit:
“You gotta think about it. You’re playing in front of people who have been watching you play all your life. As soon as you don’t live up to their expectations they’re going to talk about you and dog you and all kinds of stuff. So you want to come out and play as well as you can so you come out after the game they can’t really say much.”
Translation: I still hang around my high school parking lot.
Samuel Dalembert, on fear:
“I would say that fear gets in my way. I want to be able to make a mistake. But the fear of being penalized when you make a mistake – that’s the biggest fear. Sometimes you don’t have that leverage, so you make one little mistake and you don’t have the opportunity to make another one.”
Translation: We’re a .500 team, which means that for everything that goes wrong, something else goes right. I don’t know if you saw our win over the weekend, but that’s pretty much our philosophy. In fact, when the game gets stagnant, we sometimes f*ck up just to ensure some good karma down the line. So we’ve had to train ourselves to understand that a mistake is actually a good thing, as long as when time runs out, we’re on the plus side of the ledger. I know that’s crazy advanced, but what, you really thought our formula was steal, run, dunk, and viral Thaddeus Young marketing? Mo Cheeks is way too deep for that.
Howard Schultz’s term for what Clay Bennett stands to gain:
“The fruits of deception”
Translation: Some Bible-sounding sh-t that might scare him
Bennett’s slang for what the Sonics would be if they got the arena:
“A sweet flip”
Translation: If you ever catch me and the whole Okie ownership group in a meeting, we take turns dressing like Dennis the Menace. Aubrey’s lobbying for a full set of Archie costumes.