Monday, March 3, 2008

At least he's happy

An interesting sidebar to the Cavs’ win over Chicago Sunday was Brian Windhorst’s brief pre-game interview with Larry Hughes. Here is what Hughes said to Windhorst and ABC’s Lisa Salters in regards to his “unhappy” two-and-a-half year stint in Cleveland. The quotes come directly from Windhorst’s blog. You can read the entire entry here:
“Some people take this the wrong way, but winning a championship is not what I base everything on. I was given an opportunity to play basketball, travel around and have fun doing it and that’s what I want to do. I was asked to sacrifice for the team (by playing out of his comfort zone at point guard) to win. That is what was told to me and I wasn’t happy with that. I wouldn’t take being unhappy and not being myself and winning.”

I’ve read few quotes that epitomize the prima donna athlete so precisely. What a noble “sacrifice” it must have been to play alongside LeBron in the Finals while underachieving on a massive contract that was strapping the franchise. Of course, we could blame Danny Ferry for offering that bloated contract, and Mike Brown for not using Hughes’s slashing skills properly…there’s little doubt the combination of those two factors conspired somewhat to effect his production and thereby his standing with fickle fans.

However, it became painfully obvious things were not going to work out here for Hughes. Too many injuries, too many bad shots, too much of the “square-peg-in-a-round-hole” feeling that came when watching Hughes and LeBron on the floor together.

Now Hughes can score his 20 points a night (on 25 shots) as the #1 option in Chicago’s up-tempo offense…I hope he has plenty of “fun” getting bounced by the one or two seed in the first round of the playoffs every year. On the upside, he'll have extra time to enjoy the trappings of the pro athlete lifestyle, which include getting neck tattoos, training pit bulls to kill, having one's Bentley shot up outside a nightclub, and siring children out of wedlock.