Interview — Jazz's Earl Watson on the mall, getting lost, rollercoasters, Old School
Charlotte, N.C. — Leftover quotes from a Wednesday feature about the bond between Jazz veterans and young players.
"I'm probably closer to them than any group of players on the team, which is odd. I don't know how. Maybe just being a big brother? And being some type of mentor — they ask me a lot of questions. We come over early together, so that bond is automatically connected. And we're on the court a lot together, especially last year. So I feel like it's really important to bond with and get to know your teammates as a point guard. Because we can get in the game and I can tell 'em something that they won't take offense to, because we have such a close connection. They know I care about them. It's like a brotherhood. It's a bond that's hard to break. So that makes my job easier, to get to know them personality-wise and it translates on the court."
"It's a very unique situation. Yesterday they went to Mall of America, and I didn't go because I'm fighting over this cold; I'm finally feeling better. But they told me they rode rollercoasters. And I'm, what? They're like, 'You would of rode them, too.' And I'm like, 'Naw, I wouldn't have rode them.' I wouldn't have gotten on a rollercoaster. 'How old are you, like teenagers?' So it is like a disconnect somewhere along the line. It's not all the way parallel. That was weird. I'm glad I didn't go."
"Jeremy took us on a walk through Sacramento that — I'll never follow him again. Me and Burks will never follow him. He said we was going to the mall. We went through this deserted ghost town. I don't know where we was going. We crossed the train tracks, went across the bridge, some more train tracks, and then realized we could've just walked straight across the street. So we followed him. You got to ask Burks. Then he took us through this tunnel, and then he said we was going to the mall. We got to the mall and there was like two people in the mall. Two people. That's not a mall. We don't know. We're still trying to figure it out. It was the most unsafe walk I've had since I was a kid. That's the last time we follow him. Never again. Cabs from this point."
"I'm like the movie Old School — I went back to college. I'm Tank. Frank the Tank. That's me. No more Bulldog. It's Frank the Tank. Old School; I'm back at college. … We went to go eat yesterday. We went to Hard Rock Cafe. They wanted to step it up. Whatever. I paid for it, it's cool. I know they like to pay for things, but I told them when I retire and they're in their prime, they've got to take me out to dinner."
"I knew where I was going. They just didn't like where I was going. I have no control over who's at the mall. … It's not my fault. I didn't know nobody was in the mall. I can't just be like, 'Hey [everyone], we're going to the mall.' I'm not going to tweet it."
Brian T. Smith
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