Clippers’ John Wall Says He Never Wanted to Sit With Rockets

Clippers point guard John Wall said he was not at all happy with the Rockets’ decision to sit him out last season as they sought a trade, via Sam Amick of The Athletic.John Wall

“Pissed as hell,” Wall said, via Amick. “Pissed as hell. I wanted to play basketball.”

Reports indicated that the Rockets and Wall had reached a mutual decision for Wall not to play. He said that was actually not the case.

“I felt like I deserved to play, like I deserved to start, he said, via Amick. “(But) if you drafted a guy No. 1, or No. 2, and he’s a point guard, like I totally get it. I’m not mad about that. So that was kind of tough for me to be in that situation, because I want to play. And then the whole time, I was like, ‘Man, we’ve got to find a way to get out of here.’ I know it’s gonna be harder because I had two years left (on his contract worth a combined $91 million).”

He actually played a half a season with the Rockets the year before, and had gained a reputation for leadership, unselfishness and production. Eventually, he agreed to a contract buyout with the Rockets this past offseason, landing with forwards Kawhi Leonard, Paul George and the Clippers.

“I think if you stay true to yourself, and … just being authentic, that’s just how I was raised,” Wall said, via Amick. “My mom says, ‘Always be authentic, but just be known more as a better person (than a) basketball player.’ That takes you a long way in life, and that’s how I always try to examine myself.”

With Leonard also returning after a season away (due to knee surgery), the Clippers may take some time to adjust to each other. But most suspect they will be a bona fide Western Conference contender by the end, and Wall’s reemergence is a big reason why.

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