If there’s one good thing about the downtime in an NBA offseason, it’s the opportunity to hear from NBA players in a more candid enviornment. Most guys seem a little more forthcoming with their comments and obviously optimistic about the upcoming season.
Dime Magazine is one great source for obtaining these kinds of interviews and after talking to the newest Celtic Von Wafer over this weekend, we hear from, for my money, one of the best interviewers on the C’s Kendrick Perkins in a terrific back and forth with Dime’s Austin Burton. A few interesting nuggets from the piece, which I strongly encourage a full read through:
On His Rehab Thus Far:
Oh man, it’s been going great. Surgery went extremely well, so I’m just rehabbing, trying to take it day by day, one day at a time and go from there. Right now I’m doing better than I expected. The doctors said I’m ahead of schedule, so I should be back my mid-February.
On The NBA Age Limit:
I feel like personally, if you’re ready to come out as an 18-year-old in high school, you could come out. You can get a job at 18. Some guys that came out haven’t been successful, but it goes up and down. I think overall the ratio is high for guys staying in the League after coming out of high school. I don’t see a problem with it. Some guys just don’t wanna go to college, so now they’ll go overseas, then come back to the NBA. It’s not about how you get to the NBA, it’s if you get to the NBA.
On Adjusting to NBA Lifestyle:
The biggest part is leaving the life alone and concentrating on basketball. Once you can grow apart from the NBA lifestyle outside the court and just focus on hooping, you’ll be alright. That was the biggest adjustment for me.
On The Heat Being New Rivals:
I mean, they have a pretty good team on paper with LeBron, Bosh and D-Wade. But at the end of the day, anything can happen in the playoffs. We proved that this year; we were 17-17 down the stretch and guys counted us out, but we already knew no team wanted to see us in a seven-game series. We felt that way, we believed in ourselves and the coaches believed in us.
It’s gonna be a hard challenge for (Miami). It’s easy to get all those guys on one team, but to vibe in the same system is another thing. Who’s gonna make the extra pass? Who’s gonna make the defensive plays? This is a grown-man’s league, and other teams are getting better, too. So you know that night in and night out, guys are gonna attack them.
On C’s Locker Room Shenanigans:
Oh man, it’s great. I always say we need our own reality show, but you’ve have to bleep out and edit too much stuff. It’s funny. Every day I look forward to going to work with the guys on our team.
Dime: Tony Allen said there’s always a fight over the music in the weight room.
KP: All the time. It’s always a big misunderstanding. Tony would wanna play Gucci Mane, Nate always has a variety, and KG wants to play the same song 40 times in a row. But KG ends up ruling at the end, because he’s got the most years in the League.
Finally, a perfect prediction to finish up the conversation from Perk the straight shooter.
Dime: Any predictions?
KP: Nah, I don’t wanna do that.
KP: Actually, yeah, I will make a prediction. We’re gonna win.
Dime: The whole thing?
KP: We’re gonna win.
The team will need Perk if it wants to do that, but the good news is Perk is one the hardest workers this team has to offer. If his body cooperates, you can bet he will be back on time.