Brendan Haywood Interviews Gilbert Arenas (Sr.)
Gilbert Arenas has continued his amazing media blackout, with reports indicating it could continue all the way up to training camp. Brendan Haywood, smart man that he is, came up with the next best thing during his sports-talk-radio-guest-hosting debut on 106.7 The Fan Friday night: a brief interview with Gilbert Arenas Sr.
The only question posed to dad wasn't about Gilbert's health, which is fine, because words aren't doing much at this point. Instead, the question was about how he feels, as a father, when he hears people criticize his son for getting paid and then not showing up on the court, when he hears people claim that Gilbert is robbing D.C.
"Well, they should talk about that, they should say those things," said Gilbert Sr., who acknowledged listening to and reading the critics. "You know, injuries gonna happen. Injuries stopped me from playing sports. You know, they have to understand Gil's heart of the game, [with] how much passion this guy loves the game. It's not about the money for him....
"When he told me that he had to go back in to get [the knee] cleaned out, he was hurt. I mean, I had to talk him through some things just to keep his mind away from really just shutting down and going nuts. And I told him it was gonna be ok, he'd have to get back healthy. And nobody really knew about this but me, so I can understand the frustrations from the fans' perspective, because they want winners. They want that organization to go a little bit farther than where it's been going."
Gilbert the younger makes his own PR strategy, and his strategy is clearly to say nothing, but dad does a nice job here. He had to comfort his injured son to keep him from going nuts; people who think he's stealing money don't need much more of an answer than that. Once you've established he feels crummy about this whole thing, the only alternative is for him to write a check back to Abe Pollin, which would be even less rational than the coin-flipping thing.
For good measure, the senior Arenas also took a mild shot at Cleveland, saying "if you take LeBron off that team, they're nobody," and talked about walking out from the United Center with his head down after his son slayed the Bulls in '05.
"You should have been out there on the court with us," Haywood said. "We had a good time. We walked off the court with our heads up that night."
Soon after, the elder Arenas got off the line, at which point Haywood said what we all were thinking: "I'm gonna tell my momma to call in."
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