Pistons shooting guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who engaged in a shouting match with coach/executive Stan Van Gundy after the player was ejected from Monday night’s contest, says their relationship is fine, David Mayo of MLive notes. “We’re good,” Caldwell-Pope said of he and his coach. “We had a talk before we got to Houston, so we’re good. Everything’s squared away. Everything was in the heat of the moment. We talked about it and squared it out.”
For his part, Van Gundy wasn’t concerned about the incident, Mayo adds. “I don’t care about that,” Van Gundy said. “Look, I used to go through that with guys a lot more than this. I’m worried about how they play and what kind of people they are. The guy was really frustrated. If you’re going to say something to a guy, in a situation where he’s already frustrated, any of us would do the same thing. I mean, I shouldn’t have said what I said to him. No, I shouldn’t have, because it wasn’t the time, it wasn’t productive, because I couldn’t keep him in the game. He and I had a good talk yesterday. Look, he’s a great guy, he works his [tail] off, he’s not a hothead or anything like that. He had a bad day in terms of that and he got frustrated, and that’s all it was. He yelled something back at me and that part was actually meaningless. The tough part was him getting thrown out.”
Here’s more from the East:
- The Wizards have been hit hard by injuries this season, something that center Marcin Gortat says the players are to blame for, Gene Wang of The Washington Post writes. “It’s not easy,” Gortat said. “We’ve got a lot of vets. We’ve got a lot of older guys. They’ve got to take care of their bodies. At the end of the day it’s the players’ responsibility. I personally can’t understand how this is possible, how people can get constantly hurt. You’ve got to do something. You’ve got to change something in your routine to become a bigger pro, to become a better player and more professional about stuff you do.”
- No player better epitomizes Chicago sports than Joakim Noah, whose pending free agency could see him playing elsewhere next season, writes David Haugh of The Chicago Tribune. The Tribune scribe also opines that the Bulls‘ worst-case scenario involving Noah is that he makes a full recovery and joins Tom Thibodeau, who is reportedly on Brooklyn’s radar for its next coach, with the Nets.