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You have teenagers thinking they're going to make millions as NBA stars when that's not realistic for even 1 percent of them. Becoming a scientist or engineer is.
I look at my jersey and see the NBA logo, I'm like, 'I didn't think I'd be here.'
It is time for everyone to sit down - the NCAA, the NBA, the players union and the coaching fraternity - and come up with suitable solutions to these problems.
It was the Michael Jordan/Nike phenomenon that really let people see that athletes were OK, and black athletes were OK. Defying a previous wisdom - not only that black athletes wouldn't sell in white America, but that the NBA as a predominantly black sport could not sell in white America.
The one thing that always bothered me when I played in the NBA was I really got irritated when they put a white guy on me.
Truthfully, this is how I approach my workout: I want to be the best athlete I can possibly be. If I can out-perform some of the better athletes then I'm happy. When I look at the NFL or the NBA, these guys look how I want to look - it's useable, functional muscle.
When I was younger, I just thought about playing in the NBA.
The way I dress, I dress totally different than I did when I was in college. I have to - try to - look professional. You change a lot when you are in the NBA, but I know where I came from.
I wanted to be a football player. Football is a sport that I love, but the more I started playing basketball, the more I started dreaming of playing in the NBA.
A lot of late nights in the gym, a lot of early mornings, especially when your friends are going out, you're going to the gym, those are the sacrifices that you have to make if you want to be an NBA basketball player.
I want to be an NBA all-star and help my team win. That's what it's all about, is winning. I'm a competitor... People said a lot about me being selfish and stuff like that. Getting into the league, I can't wait to shut that down. I'm a guy who wants to play and to win and love my teammates.
I met wonderful people playing in the NBA. Whether it is the officials, the scorekeepers, all the people who work for the NBA, not just for the Lakers, but I'm talking about just for the league itself.
I grew up on games like Madden and NBA Jam, then moved on to NFL 2K on Dreamcast. The game I really loved was Virtua Tennis.
My dream was to be in the NBA. I wasn't really focused on being a star player on a team. I just wanted to make it to the NBA. I've been blessed for the opportunities to be in the Finals, been in the playoffs ever since I've been in the NBA.
The only thing wrong with the NBA - or any other professional sport, for that matter - is a wild epidemic of Dumbness and overweening Greed. There is no Mystery about it, and no need to change any rules.
Hunter S. Thompson
Purchasing the Bobcats is the culmination of my post-playing career goal of becoming the majority owner of an NBA franchise.
David Stern should get with the mothers of the NBA and let the moms decide what the dress code should be. I asked my mother if I could wear a chain, and she told me yeah. So I do stuff that my parents allow me to do.
I've really gotten into fashion, and ever since I got into the NBA, I feel like players are walking billboards.
If I were involved with the NBA, I wouldn't want a 19-year-old or a 20-year-old kid to bring into all the travel and all the problems that exist in the NBA. I would want a much more mature kid. I would want a kid that maybe I've been watching on another team, and now he's 21, 22 years old instead of 18 or 19, and I might trade for that kid.
The NBA has made a real issue about really making these superstars the premium that everybody wants to go to. That's their calling card and their marketing tool. But the coaches at the other end of the sphere are trying to make everybody on the team, even nine, 10, 11, 12, just as important, and have a real role that's meaningful.
I don't fit into the mold of the NBA man, and I think I've been punished financially for it.
I'm not like the next Michael Jordan, but I'm also not what everyone saw me as before I started playing in the NBA, either.
You hear all these stories about, 'There's one in a million guys that make it to the NBA and stay there.' To see people cheering for me and when they say my name, it's just crazy. It's still crazy to me.
I spent 50 years in the NBA. Can you imagine doing something that you love the most in the entire world and doing it for your entire life and, besides that, getting a pile of money for it? It's unbelievable. I'm the luckiest guy in the world. And I know it.
I have short goals - to get better every day, to help my teammates every day - but my only ultimate goal is to win an NBA championship. It's all that matters. I dream about it. I dream about it all the time, how it would look, how it would feel. It would be so amazing.
I wanted to do two things when I was growing up, about your age. I wanted to play in the NBA, and I wanted to be a businessman after my basketball career was over, and that is what I am doing now.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Image of the Moment
It is no use saying, 'We are doing our best.' You have got to succeed in doing what is necessary.
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