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After Hours with Amy Lawrence PODCAST: Hour 2

Amy Lawrence Show / Amy Lawrence
The Truth Network Radio
March 22, 2023 6:05 am

After Hours with Amy Lawrence PODCAST: Hour 2

Amy Lawrence Show / Amy Lawrence

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March 22, 2023 6:05 am

Boston Celtics PxP voice Sean Grande joins the show | Ja Morant set to return Wednesday; meets the media | Austin Ekeler wants OUT of Los Angeles?


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That's positive. And in this application, heaven of course refers to the weekend. I can't, I can't yet think about the weekend. I want to, but it would be a futile exercise at this point because my brain is muddied. All of it. It's just a big jumble.

The plate of spaghetti is a little more jumbled and mixed up than, than is typical. And if you don't know what I'm referring to, well, it is how I describe my brain. Someday I'll explain it. It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence on CBS Sports Radio. So glad to have you with us on The Hump show. It is the middle show of the work week. Next hour, your chance to ask Amy anything. So we'll need your questions to our show, Twitter After Hours CBS, also on our Facebook page After Hours with Amy Lawrence. And when we can squeeze in calls, we do 855-212-4227.

That's 855-212-4CBS. The Celtics get a big victory over the Sacramento Kings on the road to wrap up a season-long road trip for them, six games. And yeah, it comes in the very late stages of a regular season that has posed some challenges. There have been some injuries, but Jalen Brown likes what he saw from the Celtics on this night.

And so the fact that they were able to grab a lead and hold on to that lead and not really allow the keys to get back into it, that's a big step. That looked like the team I recognized. We came out, we played 48 minutes. We didn't take our foot off the gas. We took care of business, ended the road trip well, get back home and take care of business again. You know, we dropped a couple of games on this trip that we probably shouldn't have, you know, the Sacramento Kings been playing good basketball. So we wanted to come in here and make a little bit of a statement.

They definitely have. That's Jalen Brown on NBC Sports Boston, which is where our friend Sean Grandy was doing his best work just a few hours ago in Sacramento. And now we're pleased to welcome him to the show before that cross-country flight back to Boston.

It's after hours on CBS Sports Radio. Sean, this road trip has featured some highs. It's also featured some lows as Jalen referenced. The loss to Utah after having a 20-point lead. Of course, falling on the road in Houston as well. So no fourth quarter collapse against the Kings, but after these past few games and really what we've seen in the in the 23 portion of the season, how would you describe the kind of basketball the Celtics are playing?

Well, it's up and down like you just said. You can't be, you can't overreact or be what's the new term everybody using the kids use prisoner of the moment, right? But you're coming off a game in which I really thought this was teed up for the Celtics to play while you're catching the Kings on the back to back. When the Celtics lose some of these leads and they lost a big lead, they had to lose some of them that were really ugly. But when you lose the game in Cleveland, for example, and you lose the one in Milwaukee a couple of weeks ago and you lose the one in Utah, that's the second night of a back to back on the road, playing at altitude at Utah, playing without a lot of your starters playing without. So those are the games that happened in the regular season. And for some reason, there's the psychological thing that says being up by 15 and losing by one is somehow worse than being down by 15 and then coming back and losing by one when it's all the same thing at the end. Then when you get to the playoffs and you have Al Horford and Jason Tatum, all these guys going hard and not playing back to back.

So they are, you're not going to have those in the playoffs. And this team has been there before and had the long run last year. And if we step back as much as it feels like it's the reverse of last year where they were dominant late and really struggled early.

And this is the reverse of that. We've seen teams that have had long playoff runs, have really good starts. And then it's like, okay, when did the playoffs start?

So I think there's an element of that too. And if I think that the outliers are going to be those leads that they lost in the back to back games, I think selfish could finish pretty strong here. The interesting thing is there's not enough time, I think, to get back to the one seed. So you're looking at arguably the three best teams in the NBA right now are all in the East. So a really good team is going home in the second round. And the top three have all clinched, right?

The Bucks, the Celtics, and the Sixers are all into the playoffs that we know, but it's real tight there between the Celtics and the Sixers. If you're saying that that's the case and these are isolated incidents, even as dramatic as they were, does that mean nobody around the team is worried about what's happened in the fourth quarter at times? Oh, I think people are absolutely worried about the fourth quarter and that the efficiency drops off and that the turnovers go way up in the fourth quarter.

That's a significant problem. The question is, when you've been a dominant team, the Celtics for the first third of the season, were not just the best team in the league, they were the best team by a wide margin. And I think we have to retrain ourselves, Amy, from looking at the season the way we used to, that the 82 game season would tell us everything we wanted to know. The team with the best scoring differential, with the team that was going to go on to win the championship, because this is, whether we like it or not, the reality is this is the load management era. And so the regular season doesn't offer us as many comfortable predictions as it has in years past.

And let's go all the way back, and I mean all the way back to 2022. Golden State was not good down the stretch last year. They were basically a 500 team. Celtics, for example, went to San Francisco and crushed them late in the regular season last year. And they had a game in which, I've heard a lot of people say, look at some of the games the Celtics lost, and they'll go, oh, championship teams don't lose games like that. Well, I seem to remember Golden State losing by about 80 to Memphis in the playoffs last year. And I know that they won the championship because I was there.

I called it and I saw them win. So I saw a team that lost by 50, whatever in the second round of the game, win the championship on the Celtics floor in June. So we may not like the load management era, but again, we have to be a little more conservative in using examples from the regular season, specific examples saying, oh, teams that do this don't win the championship, because all three of the teams at the top of the East at times this year have had some real takers. So that's some real bad games, but here we are.

And again, I don't think you can argue it. You may argue it in Denver or in Memphis, or maybe even in Sacramento, but the three best teams are all knees. Considering there are just a few games left in the regular season, how healthy should the Celtics be for the playoffs? Cause that's also been a challenge with different guys in and out of the starting lineup.

That's going to be the whole thing. Who's healthy? The Celtics, when they've had Rob Williams and Al Alton healthy, and there hasn't been a lot. The Celtics have had their, I don't want to call it the starting five or cause, you know, Joe Missoula indicated before the game tonight that it might, you know, Rob Williams could be a off the bench.

This might, the thing that happened tonight could be a real thing on the playoffs. Maybe Rob ends up coming off the bench playing 20, 25 minutes, but is he going to be healthy? Because the lesson of last year was the Celtics were the best team by a mile last year when Rob Williams was healthy. From the moment he got hurt to his half-hearted comebacks during the playoffs, the Celtics were good, but they were never that dominant again. And this year when they've had everybody, they've been, they've been really, really good. So we're talking on whatever day today is.

It's been a long day for me going back and forth. I'll be honest with you across the country, but on March 21st, 22nd, whatever it is, tell me on May 15th, is Chris Middleton healthy again? Is Rob Williams healthy? Is Al Horford healthy? Is Giannis? Is Tatum? What is the huge domino? I'm talking about these three teams, but we don't, you know, there's a major wildcard coming our way because there always is.

Something always happens that we can't possibly predict. We're spending a few minutes with Shawn Grandy, who now is in Sacramento, but in a few hours will be back in Boston. He is working in both TV and radio this season doing play-by-play.

It's after hours with Amy Lawrence here on CBS Sports Radio. You mentioned Joe Mazzulla. It's almost like it's a distant memory now that he took over at the beginning of the season rather abruptly.

What's the biggest difference between him and Emay Udonka? I think the way they handle the team publicly because Emay, when the team did not perform, and they didn't at the start of last year, he went, he had no problem taking him out to the woodshed in public, going at him that way. And it was an uncomfortable environment. It's so funny when people, fans are going to be fans and those are critical to Joe Mazzulla in the last couple of weeks. Last year in January and February, people not only didn't like Emay because the team wasn't winning, they thought his style was going to backfire. They didn't like him beating up the players because they were concerned that they wouldn't react well to it.

And you know, we all know how that turned out. So I think it's really one of the remarkable stories that the Celtics in August were probably the favorites to win it. They had made the trade for Brogdon. They had signed Gallinari. And then in, you had these three shots that happened to the team between opening night, we started training camp and the middle of August. You had the Gallinari injury costing the season. You have Rob Williams injury, which cost him the first half of the year. And then completely out of nowhere, you have the coach that led them to game six of the NBA finals replaced with a coach who had only been a head coach, you know, in small level college. And then the Celtics still started like the best team anyway, to be 21 and five start to begin the year.

So it's interesting that you're going to have an index. You know, what if you have Joe Missoula in his first year against Eric Spulster in the first round? And people are going to be, you know, looking, but you know what Eric Spulster was a first year coach too. What I always say about Joe is this. What if Joe Missoula is the next Eric Spulster, but this happens to be the way his job, what if this happens to be the way his job, he got the first job. What if Danny Haines chose Joe instead of Will Hardy and Will had taken over here as the head coach when the email doker thing happened. So it's just, people are always, you know, Joe is going to be on that frontline until he has post-season success.

And that's, that's the way of it. And he knows it and he's taken a rough 30,000 foot view towards everything, but he's calm, calm seas and a demeanor that I think carries that, uh, that players really enjoy. We talked about the roller coaster that the Celtics had been on as a team, kind of up and down a little bit. Uh, Jason Tatum himself has been on that same trajectory. Now he did have 36 points tonight. He's still a superstar, but again, how would you describe the season that he's had coming off of that NBA finals trip? I thought he was the MVP for the first third of the year since then, not so much, you know, he's had certain games and tonight the game in Sacramento was certainly one of them that made you think like, okay, he's snapping out of it since the All-Star break has been probably the longest stretch of Jason Tatum and not looking like Jason Tatum in a couple of years. And the on-off numbers, he is a plus minus net rating monster and has been for the first day he walked into the league.

This three week stretch, it's not a two game stretch anymore. It's, you know, been 13 games going into tonight since the All-Star break and the Celtics actually have been better with him off the floor and that never, ever, ever happened. So he has played a ton of minutes. He leads the league in scoring in terms of total points, which is all people really should be.

I'm on a big campaign to get that, get all of our mindsets changed from averages, particularly in the low management area. It's never been more important to look at totals. You know, Sabonis leads the league in total rebounds. Jason Tatum leads the league in total points. I'd rather have total points, you know, than someone who plays half the games and averages another point or two a game.

And I know this because I know, Amy, that Aaron Judge did not lead Major League Baseball with 0.41 home runs per game last year. Like it should be totals, not averages, but the big total for Jason Tatum is minutes. He's played the fourth most minutes in the NBA and you keep trying to get him rest and get him rest here. But you know, he's playing 38, 39 minutes a night with all these games being close enough.

That'll wear on you too. So it's difficult to sustain a year he has had. It's difficult to sustain a 21-5 start the same way it's difficult to sustain when you jump out to a big lead, particularly in this NBA. When you go up by 20, the next progression, everybody watches these games. You don't go up by 30. The league gets cut to 12.

That's how it happens. So again, for the Celtics, like everybody else competing for a championship, is this group healthy from the playoff start and as difficult as this stretch of the schedule has been, everybody forgets that you get to April. The schedule is light anyway. Celtics mostly have home games and then what nobody's factored in yet in the new NBA is that the top 12 teams in the playoffs are getting a week off because of the play-in tournament. So you're getting an extra, you know, week. Not to mention there's no back-to-backs. You have a first round stretched out to 16 days and a week off beforehand. The Celtics last year swept Brooklyn in the first round.

They played, I think, four games over 16-17 days. Sean Grandy's with us from Sacramento where he's getting set to go cross country back to Boston after calling the Celtics game on TV between the Kings and the C's. It's after hours here on CBS Sports Radio. The West is fascinating. What's your impression of the West, especially that thick midsection of the Western Conference? What I said tonight on the telecast, which is the West is either the most fascinating conference I've ever seen or it's a dumpster fire.

I can't tell which one it is. Nobody can. I think the most interesting thing that is developing here that's clear-cut is that you're going to have the experienced teams that people really like. Golden State, Phoenix, the teams that have been there before have Kevin Durant, whatever. Phoenix obviously has been there and got to the finals two years ago. Now they have Durant. Golden State with all the championships. They are going to be the underdog, the lower seed against the Memphis's and the Sacramento's.

That's really interesting. We're going to find out if these teams are for real. I think Sacramento is for real, although obviously teams that don't defend, they don't defend at a high level.

I still like their roster composition. People think of Sacramento as a young team. Aaron Fox is 25 years old. He's six years in the league.

Sabonis has been approached since he was 17. They're not a super young team. Memphis obviously could use an adult in the room.

That's pretty clear, but they're super talented. It's fun to watch. Denver, what happens when Denver gets into the playoffs? They've had meltdowns before this NBA Jokic matchup. Saturday night's going to be fascinating to watch.

I think it's wide open and it's going to be interesting to watch. Again, who's healthy? Is Kyrie healthy? Is Durant healthy?

That's going to determine a lot in the West. Before I let you go, you had the chance to do spring training games for the New York Mets on SNY and that smile on your face on your Twitter says it all, but when the dust settles a little bit, maybe you have a chance to breathe post basketball, what will you remember the most about that experience? I think a kid who grew up a few blocks from where you're sitting right now, you know, Amy in Greenwich Village who took the seven train to Shea Stadium to watch the Mets growing up in the eighties and all of a sudden out of nowhere in between Selma games. I had a couple of days of standing between Ron Darling and Keith Hernandez and I was doing Mets games on television when I grew up watching Mets games on television.

So it was not the easiest thing in the world to squeeze into my schedule, but if I can impart one life lesson to anybody about doing it, it's that what's the point of having a bucket list if you're going to say no when they give you a chance to do something like that. So it was a, you know, the Mets booth is the bill with Ron and Keith and Gary Cohen. That's the best booth major league baseball. It's and it was a, you know, an honor at every level to just sit in there and call games and get to do a world baseball classic game because one of the games was against Venezuela.

Those they all too late to home runs and the two pitches he saw. And, you know, we all have our childhood dreams. Obviously, I thought when I first said when I was super young, I thought it'd be the second baseman to the Mets. Then when I got older and I realized that wasn't going to happen, I thought that people play by play guy from the Mets. Life takes you in funny directions, but to have a chance to do that and to hang out with those guys with that crew and to be able to share a couple of days in the Florida sun with Mets fans calling, calling baseball.

And, you know, at this time at this when we're just, even during the games that I call on the game, I'm trying to keep an eye on, like I'm seeing out of the corner of my eyes. So Tani and Mike trout in the final of the world baseball classic. And it's, you can't, if you love the guy, I understand why people, younger people don't like, you don't have to like baseball.

I'm not going to be one of those people who tries to convert you, but if it's in your DNA and it's in your soul and it's just part of your life, it's always going to be part of your life. So it was a, it was a play-by-play announcer's dream. No doubt. I have a giant grin on my face just hearing you talk about it, but I have to know, did you actually say to Keith Hernandez, I'm Sean Grandy, I've done game sevens.

I didn't do the science online. That was my, uh, I did the longer one on Facebook, which is the longer line from the Keith episode, which is, you know, so I meet this guy, great guy, best guy I ever met in my whole life, baseball player, doesn't call, but it was, you know, those guys are just, you know, they're not just sort of like, you know, childhood icons or whatever. They're also just really, really good at their job. Ron Darling is, you know, one of the elite baseball, which I guess anyone could have probably predicted the time he was a player, but, um, it was pretty, it's so funny. Keith is to a Mets fan, to a Cardinals fan or a Mets fan of certain age, right? He's a baseball icon.

But if you're of a certain age, that's the first thing you think of, you think of Keith Hernandez, it's not this amazing borderline Hall of Fame baseball career, MVP award in 79 and the world series in 86. You're thinking of the Seinfeld episode is the first thing you think of. Great.

Yes. Well, I'm so happy for you. That's awesome. We're glad to catch a couple of minutes. You can find Sean on Twitter at Sean Grandy, PBP doing TV and radio this season for the Boston Celtics. So I miss you when you're not on radio, but it's great to hear your voice again, safe travels and thank you.

All right, my friend, good to catch up. Seinfeld had to be part of that. Uh, if you miss Sean doing Mets games for SNY or you missed some of the clips on social, he shared a few photos. It was so cool to see him so happy because of his history. And you can imagine a childhood dream come true.

Not that different than say a kid in his driveway, launching a buzzer beater at the end of a game. And then later appearing on the stage in March Madness in the NCAA tournament with a chance to live out those childhood dreams. We've heard a lot of that.

The one shining moment. We'll get that at the end of this college basketball tournament. We still have much that is left up in the air.

Sweet 16 will tip on Thursday. And so we've got that to look forward to. In addition, as we ramp ramp. I do it every time as we ramp up toward the start of the Major League Baseball season or now talking about mere days away, the Masters is on the horizon. NBA is inside of just a few games, as is the NHL.

It gets all kinds of nuts. So here at the end of March on into April, I've spent the last month or so trying to catch up with a bunch of friends, some family members and phone calls. And yeah, I'll do text. But if we're really going to catch up, it's got to be phone calls. And that's included people I haven't spoken to since last year. But all that's about to come to an end. So doing all my catching up, but all my communicating right now.

And that is about to come to an end with the advent of April. All right, you can find us on Twitter after our CBS Minds A Law Radio and our Facebook page too. Straight ahead, Ja Morant returns to practice with the Grizzlies.

And he speaks about his time away from the team and his counseling in Florida. It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence on CBS Sports Radio. That's today to start your three day free trial. I made a bad mistake. I can see the image that I painted over myself with my recent mistakes, but in the future, I'm going to show everybody who Ja really is, what I'm about and change his narrative.

This is After Hours with Amy Lawrence. Ja Morant going back a couple of weeks in which he takes responsibility for his actions. And the most recent red flag was brandishing a gun, raising and waving a gun around an Instagram live video from a nightclub in Denver on a road trip.

And this is just the latest challenge. There have been other issues, friends of his pointing a laser, almost like it was a threat to members of another team. And that whole flap, the incident at the mall where he was accused of roughing up a teenager, just different ways in which his behavior has raised eyebrows, if not major red flags. And then of course, with the gun, because of NBA rules and because of the situation that he put his team and the league in, there had to be an investigation. And while no charges were filed, he was away from the team and then ultimately suspended for what were eight games, though time served was included in that decision. Now he was eligible to return on Monday with the Grizzlies. They chose to keep him out a little bit longer so he could work on some conditioning. And he spent, what I read was a week and a half at a counseling program in Florida. So practiced on Tuesday is expected to play on Wednesday and then met the media. Now there is basketball sounds behind him, but for the most part, these cuts clear enough that you can hear Ja on these last couple of weeks. It's been good. Obviously, you know, a lot of learning pretty much, you know, that honestly, you know, took our time to, you know, better myself, you know, get in a better space. So the conduct detrimental clause, that's the reason he was suspended.

No, there were no charges. Ultimately though, the team itself is looking into changing when they travel home from road trips. And so to me, that's a fairly significant move when you're talking about your superstar who's young and seemingly is enjoying himself in various cities. When you have to change your team travel to try to protect your superstar, to try to protect a member of your team, it seems that there is a problem there, at least one that they are more comfortable making sure he's not dealing with himself, right? They don't want Ja Morant to be making decisions in places like Miami. So to me, that's a big deal because he is a grown man. He may be young, he may be in his early 20s, but he's still a grown man.

And this is his job. They're not babysitters for Ja Morant. And yet there have been reports that the Grizzlies are changing their policies on where they stay overnight versus where they might immediately turn and go back to Memphis. And that's an attempt to protect their young star from putting himself into these situations. So a bit of an intervention there with Ja Morant.

It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence here on CBS Sports Radio. Now he claims that he was not in counseling for alcohol abuse, for substance abuse. So really the point of it all was to deal with stress and for him to learn how to navigate maybe anxiety. We know that's a very real challenge for a lot of young people. I would say it's a very real challenge for a lot of Americans, but more and more you have young people who are in their teens, in their early 20s, even into their mid-20s who deal with significant anxiety and stress and even depression at times. The numbers of young people who at least admit to considering suicide or having suicidal thoughts, it's astronomical in the last few years. The numbers have skyrocketed which is heartbreaking, but it's a very real element of this Gen Z. A lot of it's linked to phones and to social media and just to the the extra pressures that are on young people.

And as much as he is this incredible star, as I say he's still in this space where he's just 23 years old and is learning on the job and is learning in a white hot spotlight. So what changes has he made over the course of the counseling and the time away from the team? Just being you know more responsible, you know more smarter, it's pretty much it for me. Obviously you know I made mistakes in the past that you know caused a lot of you know negative attention, not only to me but you know my family as well, you know my team, you know the organization.

I'm completely sorry for that. So you know my job now is like I said to you know be you know more responsible, more smarter and you know don't cause any of that. He said it was his decision to enter this counseling program and that he actually was concerned about his stress levels before the incident in Colorado in the nightclub. He just was concerned about leaving the team in the middle of the season to enter a counseling program.

So according to Jai it was something he had considered even before that video that Instagram live in which he appears intoxicated and is waving the gun around. But it was building, it was building to that point and he recognized that he could no longer handle stress and handle some of the mounting pressures by himself. It won't change you know for anybody. Only problem with me right now is you know just getting into you know space mentally that you know I'm very comfortable in and you know I feel good.

That's why I made the decision to you know take the time away and you know go to counseling and that helped me learn you know a lot of things. So I hope that this is the turning point that this is that kind of moment of reckoning for him. It sounds like the team is giving him support. As we move forward into what is a high pressure situation of the NBA playoffs, hoping that he'll find solace in that. That with the team around him who kind of recognize the challenges that they will be supportive of him too.

But there there's always a lot of pressure when you're talking about these stages. Now basketball is second nature to him and a lot of athletes find solace on the field, the court, the ice away from some of the some of the pressures of their lives and everything that comes with being someone who can't make mistakes in anonymity right. With the advent of social media however long it's been now 10 plus years, 15 years. I guess Facebook is even is it 20 years old now?

It's probably yeah I don't remember. I didn't join it until until late. I was a late bloomer on social. I don't think I joined Facebook until maybe 2012 and then Twitter wasn't even like after that.

Just because I didn't want anything to do with it. But colleagues in the business were telling me that you really need it if you're going to be clued in. You're going to be connected in this business. You really need to have social.

So I think I joined both right before CBS Sports Radio began. But so as much as social media seems like you just slough it off and some people are better at that. It's not the case with athletes and young people in general tend to care more what others think about them. I mean even Kevin Duran has burner accounts where he responds to people on social though I actually think he might enjoy that give and take. And so yeah you're living in a pressure cooker when you're a high-profile athlete who makes the kind of money that he does. I mean this this extension that he signed could be worth well over 230 million dollars and he's a superstar that has all the skills. 27 points, eight assists per game.

He's the engine that makes the Grizzlies go. But he's got to make sure that he's available to them and I don't just mean physically and physically present and available. But also mentally that he's in a head space where he can handle it all.

Actions speak very louder than words. So that's my main focus now. Obviously you know super excited to be back with my teammates. You know that's you know the main thing right now. So right now for me it's just you know keeping the main thing the main thing and continuing to you know go through my process of you know becoming you know a better me.

I feel like you know if I do that not only will it help me but it'll help you know everybody around me as well. John did actually say he deactivated his social media accounts. I think it was Instagram and Twitter but he has now opened them up again or I guess started new ones. I'm not really sure if you you can log out and not look at them but if I thought if you deactivate them you can't.

Well what do I know I don't deactivate. I will someday but anyway he's now back on these two social media sites. But he said he's not going on them. That's the big thing. Right he did say he's not using them nearly as much as he has in the past.

And so he's not going to be giving people as much of a glimpse of what's happening you know in his personal life behind the scenes. And also said that clubbing is not on his mind right now which I guess is good because he and the team need to focus on the task at hand. And yeah the team is trying to make some changes.

I'm sure the Grizz would prefer to keep them under wraps so they're not talked about but it has kind of made news that the Grizzlies are considering like for instance not staying overnight in Miami after a game where a lot of these guys they would prefer to have the night in South Beach following a game but they want to protect him from himself. That's nice in theory that's that can only last for the fact that it's only a couple weeks left in the regular season. You can't do that for a full year. No you got you got grown men. I mean you you got to let them be grown men and the rest of the team we're not allowed to hang out because we got to babysit somebody on the club. No so that would be that's fine because there's only a couple of weeks left in the season and that's great and I hope for John Marant and for his sake and everything is going to be fine and well I'm rooting for him but I mean as much as the team wants to protect their asset and their best player you can't go into a season and say uh guys we're not going to stay here because we don't trust you to go out at night like I mean what are we doing? Yeah they're his bosses that's his employer it's not his babysitter. Well and more importantly because it's not everybody else on the team you got 14 other guys I mean if they want to go hang out they can go hang out they want to go get dinner they're gonna go get dinner like you know we got to go home because you know Ja can't play tonight like no and I don't mean play on the court I mean like I don't mean you know what I mean like it's not little kids like you know Ja can't come out tonight so the rest of us can't go no no no like they're grown men they could do what they want to do you just got to be smart and that's where Ja has to figure this whole thing out and and know what he can do and what he can and what's going to get him in trouble or won't. But he also when they're on when they're home he also has off days and opportunities to do to get himself into sticky situations then too they can't monitor him 100% of the time it's just not possible the off season's coming up too and he'll be on his own he you're right he's gonna have to figure this out if he because now I don't want to say I mean I guess it would the the gun would count as a strike against him but now there's a bit of a track record and so the NBA would have to handle this maybe even with more of a heavy hand if he continues to put himself in situations where he's embarrassing the league and his team. Right and whatever you have to do whatever that is I mean if you can't you know if you know yourself and I can't put myself in the spot or I can't do this or I can't do that like those are the things you got to figure out or you know what I need somebody with me to make sure that I'm making the right decision. A swim buddy I need a swim buddy. There's a lot of people that that that works for them you know at least for a little while an accountability partner whatever it is and somebody to just kind of like remind you every once in a while whether it's a close friend or whether it's someone that you need to bring into your circle from the outside where it's like look I need you to make sure that I'm doing the things that I'm supposed to be doing hopefully you don't need it for a long period of time but maybe it's for a little while maybe that's better whatever it is that you need to do to get you back to get you right to get your mind where it's supposed to be and to make sure that you're not doing things that you're not supposed to be doing whatever that is for Ja Morant and whatever the counseling that he went through what whatever it is because everybody's different that's hopefully where he's going to get to but like I said it can't involve the rest of the club can't involve the rest of the organization yeah right because at some point as much as he is their best player and as much as they're going to go as far as Ja Morant's going to take them it can't be one against 14 in that locker room of just life where yeah great Ja's our best player but geez I mean we can't even go to dinner because of this guy like that can't be the case so they have to be able to to balance the two situations all right coming up in fact an hour from now you'll have a chance to ask Amy anything Amy Trask has submitted a question I'm pretty excited about that let's hope hint hint producer Ja picks that one so on our show twitter after hours cbs on our facebook page too it is the hump show middle show of the work week you are listening to the after hours podcast and off to Eckler Eckler hits the hole and he's through to the 40 to the 50 to the 40 it's a foot race 30 20 10 Austin Eckler touchdown Chargers 72 yards a new career long this is after hours with Amy Lawrence Matt Smith on Chargers radio but will he be a charger in 2023 that's the question I gotta tell you Austin Eckler would be an asset to any team that brought him on board because of his versatility and I know he generally misses a couple of games with injuries here and there but we have seen his productivity over the past couple years especially in which he can provide such different looks and he can hurt opponents a variety of ways he's a bruiser too he takes contact and sometimes he creates contact he doesn't shy away from it to be sure not only can he run with that ball but he can also catch passes and I love the different angles and looks that he gives the Chargers he's kind of this wrinkle that you can use a variety of ways and that's what you have to game plan for and so inside the AFC west I wonder how many of those teams are thinking oh yeah please trade him please trade him please trade him it's after hours with Amy Lawrence oh hi Pat that giggle is fantastic why can I have a laugh like that if I could just have a laugh like Patrick Mahomes I feel like I could entertain my friends and family for hours people made fun of my voice for my entire life that's true but it's also very distinct nobody ever mistakes Patrick Mahomes for well other than Kermit sometimes it sounds like I don't even think I can imitate that I'm not great at impressions anyway but to try to imitate it's kind of a bubbly like gurgly type of a laugh I laugh when I hear other people laugh anyway so I and I also cry when I see other people cry or hear other people cry so I have that empathy all right so here's where we are with Austin Eckler he asked the Chargers if he could seek a trade because he's unhappy with how much he's making or scheduled to make in 2023 and to elaborate on that he agreed to appear on the green light podcast with former NFL defensive lineman Chris Long of course you know his name so why exactly is he making these waves with the Chargers I'm so underpaid right now as far as my contract and when I contribute to the team it's like I am I am relentlessly pursuing this like I want to get something long term done I want a team that wants me long term yeah right because look I I'm at the peak of my game right like I'm I'm gonna score you another 20 touchdowns as long as I'm healthy I'm gonna score you 20 touchdowns I'm gonna have you know another 1,600 all-purpose yards yeah right I'm getting half my value of what I could be getting right so it's like I am relentlessly pursuing someone who wants me relentlessly pursuing now I thought at least at the beginning that he was referring to the contract but then he says I'm relentlessly pursuing someone who wants me and this is how it is a lot of times with professional athletes the compensation equates to respect the compensation equates to the desire to have a person on the roster I wish that worked in radio but it definitely does not I have far more respect than I have money or income that are that is invested in me by the company so for Austin he's he's right in terms of his value as I mentioned he's extremely versatile in this past season he played 17 games started all 17 games a really healthy season for him finished up with let's see he was at 915 rushing yards he had another 722 receiving yards which is pretty incredible so you put those together and you're talking about over 1600 yards and then in terms of touchdowns 13 on the ground which is actually more than he had in 21 in terms of rushing TDs and five of them through the air and so the the way that he's performed for the chargers and the asset that he is in that same backfield with Justin Herbert is is incredible I mean that's a one-two punch that's formidable in the AFC West where the Chiefs reign supreme Eckler wants to make it clear that it's not about the Chargers and he's not ticked off about it he just wants to make sure he gets what he deserves I think it's actually really important to kind of put out there that it's not like oh I hate the Chargers and I need to get out of this organization and and I need to leave like that's that's couldn't be further from the truth like I would like to stay if if it was under the right circumstances it was put out there that the Chargers kind of put a block on the talks of extension and so I was like okay well if if if you don't see me in your long-term future right now then give us opportunity to go talk talk and see if someone else might so that's how I see it it's literally has no I nothing to do with the the relationship like like I've made a great relationship there like grown there that's where I was that's where I started right and so I want to be there but on the right terms he signed a four-year 24 and a half million dollar contract in 2020 so he's going into the final year of that deal and he's scheduled to earn six and a quarter million dollars all right considering again his again his value and his durability the last two seasons specifically he led the NFL in touchdowns with 20 going back not last year but the year before and then in 2022 18 total touchdowns which again was tops in the NFL and had a career high in rushing yards so he's definitely due for a raise the Chargers may want to reconsider paying him instead of losing him it's after hours CBS Sports Radio
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-22 08:26:46 / 2023-03-22 08:44:20 / 18

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