New York Knicks center Tyson Chandler appreciates his NBA history -- to a point. During a chat via Livestream Wednesday night, Chandler, the lone center on Team USA for the London Olympics, said Celtics legend and Hall of Famer Bill Russell is his favorite player of all time. "He's such an inspiration, not only for what he did on the court but what he did off the court," he said. Chandler disagrees with the likes of Charles Barkley and said his current "dream team" would beat its 1992 counterparts "because I'm on it." He also said he would be happy to play for Team USA again in 2016 if asked and is most excited to face Spain, which has three NBA players on its team, in London.
Chandler said during the chat, which was hosted by the U.S. Olympic Committee as part of its Digital Sendoff campaign, that he's used to standing in the back of photos but otherwise enjoys being the tallest member of Team USA. As far as the "disadvantages" of his height: "When you're 7 feet tall, you can't go and buy clothes off the rack, and obviously, you have to watch your head. ... On a plane, the bathroom isn't made for you, the seats aren't made for you ... but I feel blessed."
As far as being short: "I'd rather be tall because that's the way God made me."
The Olympian said his most important pregame ritual is to "take a nap and try to relax my mind ... from the time I wake up from my nap, it's game-time things I'm preparing for."
He does occasionally play "NBA2K," but never as himself. "But I always win when I play."
Boston's Rajon Rondo, who has become the fall guy in the eyes of many for Ray Allen's exit to Miami, won't be playing in the Olympics. But he's still headed over to Europe for some international hoops as part of the Nike World Basketball Festival.
About to take off for WBF in Paris. #nikebasketball
— Rajon Rondo (@RajonRondo) July 12, 2012
Wednesday was 7/11 -- which meant not only the ESPYS, but Free Slurpee Day nationwide. Plenty of athletes (past and present) took part.
RT @Kthebarber: Free slurpees today at 7-11( big!!!!!!!)
— Jared Dudley (@JaredDudley619) July 11, 2012
Some days are better than others.
Oh the Day Just Got Better! lockerz.com/s/224118133
— Warren Sapp (@WarrenSapp) July 11, 2012
— Jonathan Stewart (@Jonathanstewar1) July 11, 2012
Athletes are often asked about pregame rituals. NASCAR Nationwide Series driver Brian Scott keeps it simple and in line with the color of his firesuit.
— Brian Scott (@bscottracing) July 12, 2012
You might have seen this ad during the ESPYS Wednesday.
It appears the bond between Jimmie Johnson and "Pricklbear" might last, even with his release into the wild.
— Jimmie Johnson (@JimmieJohnson) July 10, 2012
If you see any offbeat and fresh newsy links from your favorite sports site that might be of interest to others, pass them along to me @billsperos or firstname.lastname@example.org.If you see any offbeat and fresh newsy links from your favorite sports site that might be of interest to others, pass them along to me @billsperos or email@example.com.