In our second wave of our Media Day interviews, we talked to the guys that went with Dwight Howard on that blockbuster four-way trade, Chris Duhon and Earl Clark (who I found to be… VERY relaxed). Check ’em out, guys.
FORUM BLUE & GOLD: What was your reaction when you got traded to the Lakers?
CHRIS DUHON: It was just part of the business. Obviously, Orlando’s been great to me. You hate to leave a city like that but given the circumstances, it happened. Being able to come to a franchise like this is a once-in-a-lifetime type of thing. Very happy and fortunate to be a part of it.
FB&G: You were there with Dwight at Orlando. Describe the situation that happened there.
CD: Dwight’s a great guy. You guys are going to figure that out real quickly by talking to him. He just wants to win. It was a tough situation for everyone. Nobody knew the right way to handle it. It was just one of those things where you had to pick a bad guy and everyone chose to pick him. Now he’s just looking for a fresh start and he’s excited about being here.
FB&G: What do you feel your role is?
CD: I have to go and earn (my role). I’m going to come out and focus on bringing in a lot of energy defensively. I feel that’s one of my strengths. On the offensive end, with all the weapons that we have, most of my job is going to be to knock down shots. That’s something I’ve been working on this summer. I’m really focused and prepared and excited about going out and doing it.
FB&G: Last year in the playoffs, you were kind of an internet sensation with the traveling thing. Are we going to see a lot of that in the Lakers this year?
CD: *laughs* I hope not! Hopefully, I’m out there on the court. If we’re in an intense game, I don’t know what’s going to happen. It was a heat-in-the-moment type of thing. I’m a very intense and emotional guy. I just love being around the game of basketball.
FB&G: But it was fun for a minute, right?
CD: It was definitely fun for a minute!
And please check out this clip of Phillip talking to Chris about the Princeton offense and playing with his teammates for a little bit.
FORUM BLUE & GOLD: This is quite different from where you’ve been (Phoenix and Orlando). What do you think?
EARL CLARK: Definitely different. But it’s great. I’m happy to be here and I’m excited for training camp.
FB&G: Obviously, the team goal is to win the championship. What do you hope to accomplish individually?
EC: My ultimate goal is to be happy. Waking up, healthy everyday. Getting to come and being able to work. As long as I can do that, I’ll be happy.
FB&G: What was your reaction when you learned you got traded to L.A.?
EC: First of all, it was a shock getting traded. Once I soaked it in and had to sit back and think about the opportunity I got here in this great organization, I just felt blessed. Once I got that in my mindset, I just took it from there.
FB&G: What’s your offseason regimen been like?
EC: Just worked on what I do every summer. Basically getting better as a basketball player. Be a better shooter, be a better defender, be better conditioned. I just work on my overall game. It’s nothing specific I worked on.
FB&G: Do you feel extra pressure being on the Lakers?
EC: I don’t feel any pressure. I have a great team and some good teammates. Just play hard, work within the team concept, and being a team player.
Is it just me or will Earl Clark redefine the nickname space cadet?
Dude seems too laid back for a guy that might be out of the league in a year or two if he doesn’t show up. If guys like T-Mac, who had decent averages last year cant get a job this guy will be out of the NBA quick.
Rey Moralde says
I don’t want to assume anything, you know? But, yeah, he looked really relaxed there. He seemed content to be there. Hopefully, that doesn’t translate TOO much when it comes to practices and games.
Edwin Gueco says
Chris Duhon used to be the PG sought by many teams that’s was 5 years ago, has he mellowed and fully satisfied to be in the second team? Well, there are young dudes in Lakers PG who would take over his place like Morris of JDO. I hope this Laker 2nd team continue to develop to put pressure on those regulars lagging behind. More so, I hope everyone will be in the same page willing to contribute meaningful minutes to Nash who should not be playing more than 30 minutes per game. Btw, is Chris Duhon better than Ramon Session or vice versa?
Chris Duhon was generally considered one of the worst PGs in the league, if not the worst. He’s worse than Blake, forget about Sessions. Maybe he can provide some value in a very limited role, but that’s extreme optimism.
Joe Johnson said over at lakersnation.com that the Nets can beat Miami and Lakers for championship. Here is a comparison of the starting 5 for the 3 teams.
Come to think of it people… Comparing Heat, NJ, Lakers
PG: Chalmers, Deron, Nash = Advantage: Deron(due to age, otherwise Nash)
SG: Wade, JJ, Kobe = Advantage: Kobe(close second is Wade, if healthy, otherwise JJ)
SF: LBJ, Wallace, Metta = Advantage: LBJ(But Wallace and Metta defends LBJ well)
PF: Bosh, Humpries, P. Gasol = Advantage: P. Gasol (close is Bosh)
C: J.Anthony, Lopez, Howard = Advantage: Howard
LA Lakers = SG, PF, C
Miami Heat = SF
Nets = PG
The New Jersey Nets is not far behind, don’t you think? He might just be right… lol
Duhon has always been able to hit an open shot. He looked out of shape last year but with an opportunity to get some PT let’s see what he does with it. And may have an out because he was a rep at the lockout meetings.
Clark has nice size and potential. If he can guard quick guys on the perimeter he has value. Stick him on Harden or Lamar. It sucks to hear him say he doesn’t work on just one thing. That’s usually how role players stick when their great at one thing.
Kenny T says
Coming out of Duke, I thought Chris Duhon would have a solid NBA career. Word on the street is that he likes to party. I hope he’s ready for this opportunity.
Kenny T says
Laker beat writer Dave Mc is reporting that Dwight was able to FULLY participate in today’s practice! The story is at ESPN Los Angeles. Very encouraging news!!
How did we end up with three players for one, was it the salaries? I would have thought Bynum for Howard would be all that was needed. Of course it was a multiple team trade, so it must just have ended up that we had to take Duhon and Clark anyway.
We also traded mcroberts,eyenga, and I might me missing 1 more – wasn’t a 1 for 1 trade
I always liked what I saw from Earl Clark in his time with Phoenix & Orlando. I recall him hitting the 8-10 foot jumper off of the dribble with pretty impressive regularity (at least against the Lakers). Hopefully an upgrade to a Josh Powell type player. I like the Lakers adding offense to the bench. Last season there were zero scorers coming off the bench.
Talking about Josh Powell – he signed with the spurs
The 2 guys from the Magic have a clean slate,hope they take advantage. Clark should try to impress on D at the 3 or 4. Duhon has to shine while Blake is out,and Nash plays limited min. pre-season.
Thanks Shaun @10, I forgot about the other two Laker players that were involved in the trade. I am so worried about AT&T U-verse not having Laker games on this season, that my mind is lost and confused at the moment.