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t-Bone
06-17-2004, 01:36 AM
A little history lesson.

Four years ago, an NBA franchise had a lone superstar on the verge of free agency whom they knew wanted to go to a team where he perceived he had a better chance of winning. The team made an effort to keep him, but in the end they traded him, getting something of value rather than wait and get zip.

The superstar player was Grant Hill.

The team was the Detroit Pistons.

The, ahem, world champion Detroit Pistons.

Four summers later we find the team that traded for Hill in the same scenario. That team is the Orlando Magic. And the superstar player looking to go elsewhere is, of course, Tracy McGrady.

Similar? You betcha.

Granted, McGrady doesn't have Hill's ankle. Neither, however, does he have Hill's heart or work ethic. If McGrady worked half as hard on the court as Grant Hill has done just to get on the court, we might be looking at him as the greatest player in the game's history.

But we're not. Instead, what we might be looking at is T-Mac's backside as he walks out the door.

For all you Tracy McGrady zealots out there who send me e-mails, some of which should come complete with a laugh track, there is a reason why the Magic aren't falling all over their faces, begging and pleading with this guy to stay. There is a reason why, when I talked with Magic general manager John Weisbrod the other day, he bluntly told me, "I'm pretty sure we still could've finished in last place without Tracy McGrady."

Weisbrod is a hard-nosed hockey guy. Some say he's old school. I say he's just school. Period. There should be nothing old about demanding hard work and dedication and accountability. The Pistons didn't teach us something new. They merely reinforced age-old tenets.

Pistons coach Larry Brown tried to get Allen Iverson to buy into those things during his six years coaching the Philadelphia 76ers. Yet, as great as Iverson is, the most famous sound bite we have from him is this: "I'm supposed to be the franchise player and we're talking about practice. Not a game. We're talking about practice. Practice! How silly is that?"

There is a lot of Allen Iverson in Tracy McGrady, minus the corn rows and arrest record. T-Mac, a mannerly and likable young man, is smarter than that. But that doesn't hide the facts that are starting to surface. In anticipation of his departure, whispered stories are leaking about the staggering number of practices McGrady missed or begged off from.

Here's another page from history. Remember two years ago, when Horace Grant played for Orlando? ESPN.com did a story quoting an anonymous Magic player calling out Tracy McGrady, accusing him of being lazy and a malingerer, lacking both dedication and leadership skills. That anonymous player was Horace Grant, and after the story appeared, he and McGrady almost came to blows on a flight home from Chicago after an embarrassing, blowout loss.

That should have been a clue. Not that the Magic really needed any clues. They saw the same things. Instead, Orlando reacted by releasing Horace, so enamored, as we all have been, with T-Mac's otherworldly talents.

But his talent will only take him so far. The most talented basketball player I've ever seen, ever since I laid eyes on him in college, was Dominique Wilkins. Michael Jordan did not have Dominique Wilkins' talent. At the same time, Wilkins didn't have Jordan's heart and head. Jordan won six NBA titles. Wilkins never won one.

Inside the Magic braintrust, they are wondering now if McGrady is more Wilkins than Jordan.

This past season, when Orlando lost almost three times as many games as it won, McGrady in the midst of it all talked of retirement when the team started 1-5, then packed it in with nine games remaining because of what he said was tendinitis in his knee. In between, he quit playing what little defense he ever used to play and became a one-dimensional perimeter shooter, and not a very good shooter at that. Sure T-Mac was the scoring champion again, something that sure seemed more important to him last season than victories did, but his .417 field goal percentage didn't even crack the league's top 50.

And all of this while he was supposed to be the team captain. Some captain. If McGrady is with this team next season, don't expect to see that silly little "C" on his jersey again.

If McGrady is traded, it'll be his choice. Make no mistake about that. You don't trade that kind of talent unless you have to. But if he is traded, you will then finally start to hear stories about his work ethic and commitment, or lack thereof. And don't be surprised if those stories come, not from management perhaps trying to save face, but from teammates who last year grew increasingly frustrated with a guy who, in their minds, conveniently complained of back soreness whenever it was time to practice.

But Tracy may stay. Who knows what goes on in his mind? When he came to Orlando, he said he wanted to be the man. But once he became the man, he complained about having to do it all. If you put together all his quotes through the years, you'd have a jumble of contradictions. That's Tracy.

What I believe he wants, more than anything, is for the Magic to baby him and beg and plead that he stay. He might get a little bit of that tomorrow when he meets with owner Rich DeVos. DeVos will probably come across as the good cop to Weisbrod's bad cop.

That's fine. Whatever might work.

But know this, if he does stay, things will be different.

"If he decides he wants to stay," Weisbrod said, "he's going to buy into our philosophy. That much I know. Personalities have always ruled here. We don't want to run into those mistakes again. We want an environment where the name on the front of the uniform means more than the name on the back. I know that's not a very popular way to be in basketball, but that's what we're going to do."

That's what the Detroit Pistons just did it.

The Magic tried it the other way. They've learned. History has done what it's supposed to do. It has taught them. And you know what they say about people who don't learn from history?

Something about being doomed to repeat it.

Contact Kerasotis at 242-3694 or HeyPeterK@aol.com. Listen to him Friday mornings from 8:30 to 9 on WMEL-AM 920

http://www.floridatoday.com/!NEWSROOM/columnstoryS0617PETERK.htm



I dont know about this, does not sound good if true.
hell, its probably just a writer, trying to dscourage other teams, from getting him :laugh:

TheSauceMaster
06-17-2004, 02:49 AM
Oh I am sure if Tmac Leaves , there is gonna be alot of "Dirty Laundry" That's gonna be aired out , things that have been kept quite.

ROCislandWarrior
06-17-2004, 02:50 AM
Oh I am sure if Tmac Leaves , there is gonna be alot of "Dirty Laundry" That's gonna be aired out , things that have been kept quite.

and if Ron leaves, the same will happen here.

TheSauceMaster
06-17-2004, 02:55 AM
Oh I am sure if Tmac Leaves , there is gonna be alot of "Dirty Laundry" That's gonna be aired out , things that have been kept quite.

and if Ron leaves, the same will happen here.

True but people will expect to hear it about Ron;)

ROCislandWarrior
06-17-2004, 02:58 AM
Oh I am sure if Tmac Leaves , there is gonna be alot of "Dirty Laundry" That's gonna be aired out , things that have been kept quite.

and if Ron leaves, the same will happen here.

True but people will expect to hear it about Ron;)

Oh yes...yes we will :devil:

But I have to believe that if DW and LB bring in Tmac, they will talk to him first and let him know exactly how things are run around here and what will be expected of him.

Larry is a no BS kinda guy...if Tmac is a BS kind of player, then Larry won't bring him here

TheSauceMaster
06-17-2004, 03:00 AM
You guys will learn to hate me if we get Tmac and we still Get no Championship next year :devil:

able
06-17-2004, 05:29 AM
TMac is no leader, he said that, we all know that.
Lazy perhaps, I can't judge that, but what I do know is that if you try to perceive matters from his pov you will perhaps change the thinking a wee bit.

What good would it have done if they had won 15 more games?

A team sport, I grant you, Pacers and Detroit are examples, but rest assured that if we did not have a Ron and Reggie, and some other talent (hard working) around and JO would have to do it all alone, he would start by getting angry with his teammates and end up relaxing in the garden.

It's always a two way relationship, your "stars" can only bring what the supporting cast allows them to bring, in a team game it is very hard to defend the ball, steal it, make the play, score the points and that all on your own.

Will Galen
06-17-2004, 07:24 AM
TMac is no leader, he said that, we all know that.
Lazy perhaps, I can't judge that, but what I do know is that if you try to perceive matters from his pov you will perhaps change the thinking a wee bit.

What good would it have done if they had won 15 more games?

A team sport, I grant you, Pacers and Detroit are examples, but rest assured that if we did not have a Ron and Reggie, and some other talent (hard working) around and JO would have to do it all alone, he would start by getting angry with his teammates and end up relaxing in the garden.

It's always a two way relationship, your "stars" can only bring what the supporting cast allows them to bring, in a team game it is very hard to defend the ball, steal it, make the play, score the points and that all on your own.

AMEN!

DisplacedKnick
06-17-2004, 09:00 AM
If they're using last year as an example, it was obvious that he wasn't very happy - the entire season. When did he start talking retirement? December?

Anyone who's ever seen someone announce their resignation knows that, with the exception of people actually retiring, their productivity goes way down. I THINK that if you get T-Mac in a different situation, that would all change.

And if he catches on with a team where work ethic, defense, etc., are bought into by everyone else, I think he'll buy in too. JMO.

Unclebuck
06-17-2004, 09:16 AM
That article rings very true to me, and it concerns me a little.

Not practicing, and the assertion that his teamates were not happy with him concerns me.

Any team with a player as good as McGrady should be at least a 30 win team, I don't care who his teammates are.

One other word of warning, McGrady as the on court disposition of Sam Perkins (I was going to say someone else, but he is too much of a lightning rod still) McGrady does not look like he is playing hard, he looks lazy.

Suaveness
06-17-2004, 09:46 AM
You guys will learn to hate me if we get Tmac and we still Get no Championship next year :devil:

Oh definitely me too.

ChicagoJ
06-17-2004, 10:34 AM
You guys will learn to hate me if we get Tmac and we still Get no Championship next year :devil:

What's that got to do with learning to hate you?

Just kidding (couldn't resist that one).

:D

Snickers
06-17-2004, 11:27 AM
I can smell the comparisons between Tracy's back soreness and Ron's migraines brewing.... :(

Hicks
06-17-2004, 11:58 AM
I can smell the comparisons between Tracy's back soreness and Ron's migraines brewing.... :(

I tend to doubt that.

Snickers
06-17-2004, 12:05 PM
I can smell the comparisons between Tracy's back soreness and Ron's migraines brewing.... :(

I tend to doubt that.

Hope so. As for Tracy, I have to give him the benefit of the doubt, with the situation he's been in for the past few years. And if he's really that big of a problem, we won't trade for him.

indygeezer
06-17-2004, 12:24 PM
Anyone who's ever seen someone announce their resignation knows that, with the exception of people actually retiring, their productivity goes way down. I THINK that if you get T-Mac in a different situation, that would all change.

And if he catches on with a team where work ethic, defense, etc., are bought into by everyone else, I think he'll buy in too. JMO.

This same arguement could be used to justify trading for Eric Dampier then too.

BillS
06-17-2004, 12:54 PM
Anyone who's ever seen someone announce their resignation knows that, with the exception of people actually retiring, their productivity goes way down. I THINK that if you get T-Mac in a different situation, that would all change.

And if he catches on with a team where work ethic, defense, etc., are bought into by everyone else, I think he'll buy in too. JMO.

This same arguement could be used to justify trading for Eric Dampier then too.

Except we have experience with Dampier and I don't know that he has changed that much.

Hoop
06-17-2004, 05:13 PM
I hope Orlando keeps bad mouthing "lazy" T-Mac, it can only make him worth less. We'll trade our 2 hardest working fowards in show business for him. Which 2 guys? The ones WE tell them. :dance:

JOneal7
06-17-2004, 10:29 PM
OH PLEASE! Question this mans heart! ARE YOU *****ING KIDDING ME! HE WAS ON A BACK WITH BULGING DISCS IN THE 2001 PLAYOFFS JUST TO HELP THIS TEAM WIN VS A TEAM THAT WAS MORE ATHLETIC AND WAAAAAY BIGGER THAN THEM. DON'T GET ME STARTED ON HORACE GRANT! THAT FOOL WANTED OUT DUE TO THE FACT HE WASN'T STARTING. AND IF ANYONE WANTS TO COMPLAIN ABOUT INJURIES...HE ISN'T ONE TO TALK. AND THIS GUYS A MORON...WHO PLAYS DEFENSE ON A TEAM THAT NO ONE ELSE DOES? WHY SHOULD HE? TEAMMATES GREW FRUSTRATED? WELL MAYBE IF THEY LEARNED HOW TO PLAY REAL BALL INSTEAD OF STANDING AROUND WATCHING TMAC GO TO WORK THEY WOULDN'T BE ABLE TO *****! WRITERS LIKE THIS **** ME OFF! I'M SURE YOU WOULD HAVE BEEN IN LAST PLACE TO WEISBROD...I'M SURE YOU WOULDN'T HAVE WON 5 GAMES EITHER. YOU FLIP A TEAM AROUND, FIRE DOC RIVERS AND HIRE HIS ASSISTANT AND SIGN HIM FOR 2 YEARS AND YOU EXPECT THAT TEAM TO DO WELL!? WITHOUT TMAC YOUR SITTING WITH 40 WINS. FOR THE PAST 4 YEARS MORON! "THE NAME ON THE FRONT IS BIGGER THAN THE NAME ON THE BACK" WHAT THE **** KINDA ***** IS THAT! AND I WAS OUTSIDE THE ARENA AT A LOT OF PRACTICES...WAITING FOR AUTOGRAPHS...T-MAC WAS ALWAYS THERE! YOU WOULD SEE HIM FLY BY IN HIS BABY BLUE MERCEDEZ. GOD I HOPE TMAC LEAVES AND WINS 3-4 RINGS AND MVPS AND CRAP CAUSE ORLANDO DROPPED THE BALL ON THIS, NOT TMAC!

JOneal7
06-17-2004, 10:33 PM
also don't get me started on this retirement bs about t-mac. Does anyone have ANY CLUE what he went through personal? his grandmother died...his cousin...he has had a family member die or a close friend every season! This time it was his buddy who got him into basketball (And away from baseball) so that retirement was in midst of a 19 game losing streak and a zone that he couldn't figure out how to bust and a all time low for Tracy Lamar Mcgrady. Lazy? NO...Leader? he can be...give him a team to lead...not tyronne lue...and a guy named howard who couldn't hit a LAYUP to save his life...uhg this ***** pissess me off...it's a good thing i don't got to defend this kinda crap with Jermaine...i imagine i'd have to if he didn't have ron , al, tinsley tho..

JOneal7
06-17-2004, 10:37 PM
I can smell the comparisons between Tracy's back soreness and Ron's migraines brewing.... :(

I tend to doubt that.

Hope so. As for Tracy, I have to give him the benefit of the doubt, with the situation he's been in for the past few years. And if he's really that big of a problem, we won't trade for him.

It may be whatever...But ANY GM FOR ANY TEAM would trade there best if not half there *****ing team for him.
He must have some kind of qualities to him.
oh what's that?
"You can't stop him...you just hope to contain him"-Paul Silas
"You basically have to let him get his and shut his teammates down, because if he beats you, and one more guy steps up...odds are your going to lose"-LARRY BROWN

***** off T-macs dick...btw who wrote that article...

ROCislandWarrior
06-17-2004, 10:38 PM
I can smell the comparisons between Tracy's back soreness and Ron's migraines brewing.... :(

I tend to doubt that.

Hope so. As for Tracy, I have to give him the benefit of the doubt, with the situation he's been in for the past few years. And if he's really that big of a problem, we won't trade for him.

It may be whatever...But ANY GM FOR ANY TEAM would trade there best if not half there *****ing team for him.
He must have some kind of qualities to him.
oh what's that?
"You can't stop him...you just hope to contain him"-Paul Silas
"You basically have to let him get his and shut his teammates down, because if he beats you, and one more guy steps up...odds are your going to lose"-LARRY BROWN

***** off T-macs dick...btw who wrote that article...

You made your point, but did you really have to say it that way?

Suaveness
06-17-2004, 10:39 PM
Well he IS the most fanatical poster...