You can’t reason with unreasonable.
I don’t see the game from a fan’s point of view. Never have. I see it from a player’s point of view and as a business. I’ve cried over losses I played in. But never have I shed a tear or thrown a tantrum over a game I watched. I’m just not wired that way.
People saying that I said what I said about Cal last night for publicity – well, c’mon. I’ve been asked by no less than 20 different outlets for interviews today all saying, “And we’ll pump your site if you like.” I’ve gone on 5 shows – mostly because they are with people I know well and because I have a hard time saying “no”. On every last one of them I requested the site not be mentioned. And they weren’t. And seeking the spotlight? I spent an entire career hiding from microphones and the media.
As for those out there asserting that I said what I said about Cal to drive a Twitter following – c’mon – what’s the difference in 42k and 45k. Really? For real?
I said before last night’s Uk/UConn game that, “Word is – it’s a #DoneDeal that John Calipari will leave UK – win or lose – to coach Mamba’s Lakers.”
And then I followed-up after the game with, “We have to listen to what they (Lakers) have to say.”
The first was given to me by someone I’ve known for more than 20-years. The second was given to me by someone I’ve known for nearly 30-years. The most comical part of the entire thing is that – IF you are one of the people wanting Cal to stay at UK – and I told you exactly who these people were – you’d be like, “Shit. For real? Shit.”
This morning I go on Dan Patrick’s radio show and say, “When it’s all said and done I think Cal stays at Kentucky.”
Some fools act as if I shouldn’t be allowed to have that opinion. Like I can’t say, “I was told that Cal is headed to the Lakers win or lose. But I’ll believe it when I see it.”
I want someone – anyone – to find a quote from me saying that I BELIEVE John Calipari IS GOING TO BE THE NEXT COACH OF THE LOS ANGELES LAKERS. If you find that I’ve said such, show it to me and I’ll apologize on the spot. I have never maintained anything other than I feel Cal will remain as coach of the Kentucky Wildcats.
Again, I’ve always treated Twitter as though I’m talking with/to my friends. Always have. I interact with people on Twitter more than any “verified” person I know I or that you can likely name. I probably do so too much – but I enjoy it and that’s why I will continue to do so. I say regularly to followers (mostly to those who are new followers or those offended by the occasional cuss word), “This is the big-boy’s channel/space. Don’t hang here if you’re expecting kiddie-table content.” I have always prided myself on not sugar-coating things and providing people unfiltered opinions on all things BASKETBALL. I will never not share information I receive ABOUT BASKETBALL with people because someone’s feelings might get hurt.
I appreciate the outpouring of kind-words from so many. But please understand that I’ve been dealing with the loud minority of people claiming to be “true blue” since I was a 17-yr old kid walking Kentucky’s campus. From having “nigger lover” keyed into my vehicle three different times in a year because I dated a black girl or three – to people for years taking shots at my sister just because she’s, well, my sister – to people still being upset 30-years later because I left school at a time when probation hovered above the program like a tornado – to supposed “proud members of BBN” last night taking shots at and personally attacking my kids OVER a BASKETBALL TOPIC … I’ve seen nearly all there is to see from that loud BBN minority.
Because I am a white, home grown, Kentucky-born and bred dude – an ugly, ignorant, selfish minority of BBN has wanted me to be what they want me to be for as long as I can remember. Do I resent ’em? Honestly – probably a little. But much more than that, at this age, I laugh at them. What are you gonna do? I’ve never been in trouble. Have always represented my school, NBA teams, family and friends with integrity – and last night was compared to a former UK’er who’s currently serving time. And that’s the most mild example. Yet, this minority always wants more from me. The only problem with BBN is that the lunatic fringe don’t know they’re the lunatic-fringe.
Everybody’s a tough guy on Twitter. It’s like the guy who flips you off in his car and quickly speeds away, but then won’t meet your gaze when you pull-up alongside him and roll down your window at the next stop-light.
A guy in the airport this morning walked past me as I was on the phone doing the Dan Patrick show. It was loud, the speakers were blaring, I was about to board my flight and it was a bit difficult to concentrate as it was – when this guy walks past me wearing a UK hat and sweatshirt – doesn’t look at me – but says, “Bad tweet last night.” As I’m talking with Dan I sort of do a double-take and lose my train of thought for a minute. I quickly gathered my thoughts, and finished the interview with DP. I hang-up, but I’d kept an eye on this guy who decided to “buck-up” while I was on the phone as he was now sitting two gates over from mine. I walked over to him and said, “I’m not sure I caught what you said a minute ago?” He said, “Uh, um … ME? Uh, I just recognized you and said that I’m a big fan.” Lol. And then – I shit you not – he says, “Man, would you care to take a picture with me? My wife won’t believe this.”
All I could do was smile. What can I do? I took the “selfie” with the guy and hopped on my plane.
Everyone’s wrong from time to time. When I am, I always do my best to own up to it. But I make no apologies for last night. The info I passed along came from legitimate people “in the know” regarding Cal and regarding the Lakers. I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that ALL of “my boy’s” would have wanted to know the information I’d just received – the very second that I received it. I assumed that people who “follow” me on Twitter would want the info as well. Apparently some didn’t. It was never my intention to put a damper on anyone’s night. I will add that the follow-up information on this topic today did nothing to dissuade my stance.
But there is a difference in “John Calipari is going to the Lakers…” and “Word is – John Calipari is going to the Lakers…” One says “it’s happening” and the other says “this is what I’m hearing”. Big – damn – difference. If people cannot distinguish between the two then I can’t help them.
Within 30-minutes of the info I shared with my Twitter pals I’m seeing “retweets” from major outlets which say, “Rex Chapman says this summer Cal going to the Lakers is a done deal.” Now, you tell me – is that what I said? “Word is” was completely removed and “this summer” was put in my mouth. The information I’d been given and passed along had now been transformed into something completely different. It had been twisted into fact. Those who never read the initial tweet would do well to find it and check it out for themselves.
Bottom-line – I don’t know if Cal will leave for the Lakers, Pacers, or Pistons. I don’t know if he will leave for some other less stressful job in the college ranks. I sure as shit hope that he doesn’t. I’ve been on the record for 5-years now professing that he’s the perfect guy for this job and that I not only believe he’s a terrific recruiter – but also a great coach. He’s been great to myself and all of the other former UK players since he arrived in Lexington in 2010. With that said, I trust the people who gave me the information about Cal last night. Whether it’s real or whether they wanted it “out there” for some other reason – leverage, etc. – I couldn’t tell you at this point. Time will tell. But bet your bottom-dollar … the info was given to me for a reason.
Cal will be linked to 10 other jobs before the spring ends. It’s the business of basketball.