I’m going to go out on a limb and say 99 percent of players, fans, coaches, insiders, reporters — and anyone else I failed to miss that make up the NBA landscape — would be on the side of the San Antonio Spurs on this particular ripping.
No offense Stephen Jackson…
In case you forgot, back in 2012, when Jackson rejoined the Spurs, San Antonio was the one-seed and looked like they were about to steamroll into the NBA Finals. After taking a 2-0 lead against the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference Finals, OKC would fire back winning four straight, and thus eliminating the Spurs from a meeting with the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals.
Well, apparently Jackson didn’t appreciate Tony Parker’s play during the series as he called out his former teammate for being selfish. However, during an interview SiriusXM NBA Radio, Jackson escalated his thoughts on the situation by essentially calling the Spurs team atmosphere fake — at least in regards to who was respected by coach Gregg Popovich.
Free agent Stephen Jackson was asked on SiriusXM NBA about his relationship with Tony Parker, a former teammate he recently criticized for his performance in the 2012 Spurs-Thunder series. As expected, Jackson didn’t hold anything back.
“It wasn’t never a point where we had words verbally, it was just a lot of things that happened on the court where as a player and as a guy who knows and loves the game, I felt like it was done out of being selfish and not for the team,” Jackson said. “You know, not being one of Popguys, not being Ginobili, Tim or Tony, it was only so much so you can say that will get respected. I was not the only guy seeing his selfish ways, I’m the only one who had balls to say it.”
Jackson might have had the balls to say his opinion — in addition to being the unsolicited spokesman for his fellow Spurs teammates that weren’t part of the Big Three — but all coach Popovich would have to do is point to his ring collection, NBA Finals appearances, Hall of Fame players, accolades and the popular opinion that the Spurs are a modeled franchise in all of sports, and that would just about be a wrap for Jackson.
Or as they say in Tennis: Game-Set-Match.