The debate around load management has been rampant in the NBA world all week.
After the Golden State Warriors decided to rest their core three players of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green for a game against the Cavaliers, there’s been tons of hot takes about whether or not load management is good for the NBA.
Perhaps the best rant yet, though, has come from former NBA champion and current ESPN analyst Richard Jefferson, who told a moving anecdote about his family buying him — and only him — a ticket to a Spurs game as a Christmas present.
“For Christmas, my parents got me a ticket to go watch the San Antonio Spurs because David Robinson was my favorite player,” Jefferson said on the ESPN pregame show.
“One ticket. My dad, who worked security and scrubbed floors and did all this stuff, he dropped me off at the game. He gave me $5 and I went in there by myself because my family couldn’t afford to come to the game.”
Jefferson then detailed how heartbroken he would have been if his favorite player, David Robinson, had missed the game due to load management and how he then took that responsibility on when he was a player (for 17 years, by the way):
“Every day that I stepped on the floor, I remembered my father,” Jefferson said. “I remember having one ticket and being there … If David Robinson wouldn’t have played in that game, I get emotional thinking about that.”
“So I take that responsibility [as a player] and say, ‘Wait, we can’t just gloss over this.’ And I blame the teams. I blame the training staffs. Because the players in this generation are doing more of what they are told, then going out there and leaving it all out on the floor.”
.@Rjeff24 shared a powerful message on load management in the NBA: pic.twitter.com/viewFKM5P3
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) January 26, 2023
On the other end of the analysis spectrum was Charles Barkley, who shared his feelings in a far more blunt fashion as he said he hopes the owners “stick their foot in [the players’] asses” when it’s time to re-negotiate the Collective Bargaining Agreement (which is set to expire following next season).
RELATED: Charles Barkley Rips Players For Load Management, Hopes Owners ‘Stick Their Foot Up Their A**’ In Next CBA Negotiation