On Friday we all had some laughs about Stephon Marbury(notes) turning down a chance to play with the Miami Heat. 'Twas typical Marbury to refuse a shot at a championship in order to throw "alley-hoops" and shoot halfcourt threes in China. However, there's another part of Stephon Marbury that rears it's head pretty often — fighting with the media.
And now, he's doing just that, making this the perfect Marbury story arc. From the New York Post's Marc Berman:
Marbury, back in China for promotional events, said a Chinese reporter mixed up the translation of his remarks and that it was erroneously reported he had rejected the Dream Team's overtures -- an account picked up in New York.
The 33-year-old told The Post that the Heat contacted him in early July before LeBron James(notes), Dwyane Wade(notes) and Chris Bosh(notes) formed the Dream Team and told him they would get back to him after "they handled all the things they had to handle."
Marbury still is waiting to hear back from Heat president Pat Riley, as Miami continues filling out its roster and could use another point guard. Marbury has not heard from James or Wade.
"It's total nonsense, why would I turn down a chance to play for the Miami Heat?" an irate Marbury told The Post from Beijing. "The report was a fabrication."
OK, cool. This makes a bunch of sense too. It's pretty easy to envision a scenario where the Heat were brainstorming ways to build their team and someone suggested Marbury making a return to the NBA. Then, maybe the Heat made a call and told him they'd get back to him after adding James and Bosh, then realized they had seriously just called Stephon Marbury asking him to play a small role on a team competing for a championship. Then they probably shared a hearty belly-laugh and ate tuna salad sandwiches before moving on to more serious matters. That is a very feasible thing that may have happened.
And while Marbury says the report is both a fabrication and a misquote, he also clarified part of his statement to Xinhua News, telling the Post that "[his] point to the Chinese journalist was that a point guard is not essential on that unit because James and Wade handle the ball so much and he would be taking on a small role in their success, as opposed to his status in China." So basically, yeah, he might prefer starring in China to barely playing in Miami. I'm not quite sure how a report can be fabricated but also contain inaccurate quotes while still needing to be expanded upon, but I also don't have a tattoo on my scalp. Yet.
While we don't really know what's going on here, we do know one thing is true. If, somehow, Stephon Marbury ends up back in the NBA, he will be the exact same guy that left a year ago. That's kind of comforting.