DeMar DeRozan had to prove the organization’s old vision of him as a cornerstone, as an efficient guard and reliable leader. He needed to mature as a two-way, inside and out player. For DeRozan, the departure of Gay had been the precise sign. His stats couldn’t be empty anymore. Read More. Written by Shams Charania on Apr 15, 2014
Kevin Love addressed the media for the first time since breaking his right hand during a morning workout routine earlier this preseason. Below is a full transcript of his interview with the media.
Tell us where your mind is at with the recovery?
My mind is obviously not happy having a broken hand, but itâ€™s good to be back today after rehabbing and being with my family for a week. Iâ€™m looking forward to getting back on the court as soon as possible. Weâ€™ll know more next week on where my hand is at, and I plan on being back sooner rather than later. Iâ€™m excited to be back, keep up on my conditioning, and itâ€™s going to be a time for others to step up so Iâ€™m excited to see that. And still be a leader, still be as vocal as possible and be with the guys whether weâ€™re on the road, whether weâ€™re at home or weâ€™re in practice. In that regard Iâ€™m excited Iâ€™m still with the team 100 percent. Itâ€™s bittersweet, but you have to find a way to prevail from this.
Did you know right away?
Yeah, I mean it was pretty much a freak accident. This happened working down on the fifth floor of my apartment complex. It was just a weird thing, it just happened and I told my trainer Rob McClanahan something is wrong, and then I tried to do another weight bearing exercise on it and I just said weâ€™ve got to go over to the Target Center right away. We talked to Gregg Farnam, he sent me over to the hospital and low and behold I broke two bones.
Are knuckle pushups a normal part of your workout?
[Not so much] knuckle pushups but ball pushups and kettle ball pushups have been. Itâ€™s weird how it happened, the same thing kind of same thing goes for my left hand in Chicago after I guess it was one of the first preseason games. I looked at my hand and saying something is wrong. It was very much the same with my right hand as well.
Have you done them regularly before?
Yeah, I do different series of pushups all the time. My hand just gave on me, and it just broke.
Can you understand how people might be skeptical?
Of course, Iâ€™ve heard everything. But this isnâ€™t TMZ, this isnâ€™t People Magazine. I think most people are just looking for a story. For me, I know what happened. Iâ€™m not trying to get around it, Iâ€™m not trying to lie. Thatâ€™s just what happened.
Do you have a date in mind?
Just as soon as possible. Iâ€™d just like to get out there as soon as possible.
How disappointed were you when you found out 6-8 weeks?
It was very disappointing. Like I mentioned Iâ€™m going to stay in shape as best I can, and Iâ€™m going to continue being with the team and keep being a leader.
Did you suspect instantly it was broken?
Yeah I did, because I had broken my left hand as I mentioned. I saw the swelling that came about, because I broke it probably about 9:45-10:00 in the morning. I got over to Target Center around 10:30-10:45 or maybe an hour later and it was already very swollen so it was either extremely aggravated or broken. And when I got to the doctor and he started pressing on my hand, thatâ€™s when I figured it probably is broken.
How have you thought the team has responded without you and Ricky?
I think in years past we probably would be in trouble, but I think with Pek and Luke and JJ and Brandon and AK and Derrick and, I mean, Shved, all the different guys that we have on this team that weâ€™re going to be OK. If we play good basketball and we continue the defense weâ€™ve been playing throughout the preseason that weâ€™re going to win some ballgames. And the sooner we get Ricky and myself back and get to a full roster, I think weâ€™re going to have a major breakthrough and continue to play better.
Are you looking at the positives out of this? That the team has helped its depth?
Yeah, I definitely think so. I think guys stepping up and getting a chance to play significant minutes. For instance Derrick Williams and Chase Budinger have played extremely well in the preseason. And I think those guys getting a chance to come out and play, and Lou Amundson and [Dante Cunningham], I think those guys have really had a chance to break through and help us win games early on.
You and Larry Fitzgerald have become YouTube sensations. Can you tell us about that?
I came to Larry with the idea that we should do a video for breast cancer because a ladyâ€¦who is kind of my LA mom when I go back to LA in the offseason, she was diagnosed with breast cancer in February and went through different stages. And obviously Larryâ€™s mom nine years ago lost her life to breast cancer. So I called him up, and we had been in touch over the last few years, and I said we should do a video. He was all for it, and it all came about organically. This is where itâ€™s at, and weâ€™re happy with the product we put out and the money itâ€™s raised for breast cancer awareness.
How big of a challenge will it be to get your shot back?
I was actually mentioning it today to coach. I donâ€™t think, obviously itâ€™s not like it was my second year in the league when I was able to shoot with my right hand. But I think the touch will come back pretty easily, and I think as long as I keep my weight down, keep in shape and keep my legs ready, if all that is intact and I stay mentally prepared itâ€™s going to come back pretty easily. And the good thing about it is when my hand heels and Iâ€™m cleared to go, whether or not my touch is back the first day, Iâ€™m going to be out there and ready to go.
Are you working on your left hand?
A little bit. I havenâ€™t really touched a basketball in the last week. But Iâ€™m looking forward to getting back into it and working on my left hand. Maybe in some ways it was a blessing in disguise.
Did you talk to your teammates about it?
Yeah, a lot of them texted me and the majority of the coaching staff texted me about the hand and how it was feeling throughout the week and when it happened. Iâ€™ve been keeping in touch with them and I addressed them in the locker room today, told them where I was, kept me up to date. They couldnâ€™t empathize but they had sympathy for me and they just want me to get back and get with the team, so Iâ€™m here now.
When did you shave your head?
I got it two Saturdays ago when I shaved it the first time. Larry shaved it, and then I shaved it again this past Saturday. This will be it for me. This will be the last youâ€™ll see it until next year or who knows?