On Monday’s episode of The Truehoop Podcast, hosts Amin Elhassan and Big Wos were joined by Stephen Jackson. Stak, as he is known, talked about a variety of subjects including his attempt at a comeback with the Golden State Warriors, his favorite coaches and his thoughts on the Starz prestige drama Power.
The most interesting revelation in the interview was Stak’s feelings on former teammate Tony Parker and his role (according to Stak) in the Spurs losing the 2012 Western Conference Finals to the OKC Thunder. Elhassan asks Stak about players that are “double agent dudes.” The ones that say one thing to your face about the coach or the team and then go behind your back to the coach and tell what you have been saying. He asks Stak, if he’s ever come across guys like that on the team’s he’s played for. Stak responded:
You know what? I have. To be honest with you I really think Tony Parker was one of those guys. I just feel like the whole time when I was there, when I had good games, when I was playing well, I felt like Tony was the guy to really go against me, to go behind my back to Pop to play (Manu) Ginobili, to play other guys because he wanted the credit.
That’s a serious threat from Stak. A logical response to that accusation would be to ask for proof. He continued:
I’m going to give you a perfect example. We was up 2-0 against the Thunder, my last year with the Spurs in (2012). They came back and won three games straight. But game six in OKC, I was having a hell of a game. I had six threes. Me and Kawhi (Leonard) was playing well.
At the end of the game, when my six threes and other guys shots got us back in the game, Tony came in the game and tried to save the day and stopped playing team ball. We ended up losing that series. I kind of felt like that while he was on the sidelines, he was over there saying sneaky stuff to players and the coaches about getting back in the game so he can try to get his own personal achievements in the game and that’s why we lost.
Pop wouldn’t say that. But I remember right after the game, me, Kawhi and Tim (Duncan) was sitting down after we lost, he came over there and said “I should have rode you guys, You all did everything you could.” That’s his way of saying I should not have put Tony in the game.
WOW. That’s a serious bomb from Stak. However, I’m inclined to believe him. Not because I think Tony Parker is a malicious person. But, Stak is one of the realest athletes to ever play professional sports. The man pulls no punches and doesn’t dance around issues. He speaks his mind and tells you what’s what. Given his background and what he has endured to reach the level of success he has, this is not something he would make up. Guys like Stak, don’t half step.
In an era where athletes are so buttoned up and cautious with their word choice, it’s refreshing to have someone like Stak back in the league. If he makes the Warriors team coming out of training camp, can you imagine the quotes we’ll get?