This is the time of year when players start to feel the heat of potentially being traded to another team. The rumors are usually relentless with social media, sports networks and sports blogs giving updated information on the proverbial rumor mill. Denver Nuggets head coach, George Karl once used this typical February chaos for his own amusement.
It’s that time of year in the NBA, just 11 days before the Feb. 21 trade deadline when an innocent question might develop into something further, and players everywhere are a little more on edge. Each game might be a player’s last for a team, and there’s no way to know who’s available.
Karl, for one, said he is careful to assure his players at this time of year that there’s not much they can do, either way, so there’s no point in fretting.
“There’s this solid anxiety to this period of time for players,” Karl said. “So, how I can calm that and make them feel like, ‘Yeah, a trade could happen, but it’s a small, small percentage.’”
Karl said he tries to avoid media in the days before the trade deadline because “we tell fibs and lies.” However, he has helped to fan the flame. He admitted he once had a contest with coaching pals to see who could get an outlandish rumor into the newspaper first.
“We make up some trade that never was proposed in 100 years and suddenly it’s on ESPN,” he said, smiling.
Sounds like that would be counterintuitive to the process. However, Karl insisted he hasn’t pulled a prank in years and is out of the business of making up trades.
Karl said he’s no longer in the business of pulling pranks, and had no trades in the works that he wanted to share. He swears he hasn’t spread any trade rumors in “7-8 years,” he said.