It’s a blog-eat-blog world out there and we’re all just trying to get by. Everybody’s looking out for No. 1, doing their best to carve out a little space for themselves while they still can. Life’s cutthroat, man. If you’re not your biggest fan, then no one is. You succeeding is on you. No use counting on anybody else to help you out.
Marcin Gortat knows what I’m talking about. From SB Nation:
Marcin [Gortat] said that on his first day in Phoenix he asked Robin [Lopez] if practice started on the court or with a video session. Robin told Marcin that he didn’t know so Gortat went to the gym while Lopez went to watch video. According to Gortat, a coach came to get him and asked why he was late and Marcin said that he had asked Robin and was told he didn’t know where practice was starting. The coach said everyone knew where they were supposed to be. Marcin took that as a sign of where things stood between himself and Lopez.
Gortat went on to talk about the opportunity that Lopez had to earn and keep the starting job.
“This guy (Lopez) had such a big chance, such a big opportunity, to play in the best league. When I was Orlando, playing behind Dwight (Howard), I was praying to get a chance to play and he (Lopez) has had this chance for two years and he didn’t take.
So I thought, when you don’t want it, there will be 50 persons behind you, waiting to take this chance, and then I came by and I took (it). Sorry, that’s business, that’s life.”
Dag. Who knew Robin Lopez was such a double-crosser? I didn’t think he had it in him. Dastardly.
Of course, according to Lopez, he’s not a devious fiend who’s out to sabotage his teammates. After Gortat’s account was posted, Lopez emailed SB Nation telling them that the team doesn’t usually know where practice starts and that “there’s a good chance I just didn’t know when he asked me.” With most other players, you might not believe this, but we know how flighty the Lopez bros are. It’s very easy to envision him not having any idea what’s going on.
But even if Robin Lopez didn’t mean to betray Marcin Gortat on their first day as teammates, this just goes to show you how competitive NBA players are. All it took was what was probably an honest mistake for Gortat to be convinced that Lopez was out to get him, which in turn led to him doing everything he could to take Lopez’s job.
All it took was one 12-second interaction for these guys to become rivals and Marcin to not be invited to Robin’s birthday party at the roller rink. Hopefully these guys get everything settled between them, because it’s going to be super awkward when they both want to play at Jared Dudley’s house.