By all accounts, Stephon Marbury’s time in Boston is a bizarre anticlimax. He rarely plays, he’s afraid to shoot, and he’s managed to completely stay out of the media, good or bad. So why does he say he’s happier than any time he’s been in his career?
A simple quote from Bill Russell seems to have motivated Marbury, by vindicating what he’s been saying all along. That his problems in New York were all the fault of the Knicks, and Marbury is completely innocent.
What, you thought Marbury was going to grow up and shoulder some blame?
“If it’s up to the (Celtics) then he’ll have a positive effect,” Russell said. “But you don’t know how much he’s been damaged psychologically from playing here. No matter how strong you are, the kind of stuff that went on this season was so ridiculous. I think what the Knicks did to him, having the whole thing play out in the papers, was wrong.”
Well, if Bill Russell says it, it must be true (never mind the fact that he works for the Celtics organization, nor that he has no idea what really happened in New York.) I’m not blaming Russell here; he’s doing his job by standing behind a player on his team.
But when Marbury says things like this, I take issue:
“Every word took a weight off my shoulders. He flushed out of my system all of this stuff I was feeling. He cleansed my spirit and my basketball soul. It was different because he was the one saying it. I mean, Bill Russell - when he speaks, there’s nothing more that has to be said.”
Look, Steph, you got a raw deal in New York. But I don’t see them having the same problems with anyone else on the staff. Until you man up and publicly take some responsibility for what went down, your NBA career is just about over. (And from the way you’re playing, it might be anyway.)