Five highlights from Celtics center Darko Milicic‘s interview at the team’s media day in Waltham:
On his Celtics role: “I’m going to do my best to get my minutes, but like I said before, right now it’s not about me. It’s about the team, especially after getting released last season from Minnesota. I didn’t expect any team to come forward, especially because all the years I’m in the NBA there’s always something going on around me. After all that, the Celtics are a championship team that came up and took me, so it’s an honor. Whatever it takes. Doc [Rivers] is a great coach. A lot of experience. He’s going to fit me wherever I fit the best. I’m not going to complain about it. Whatever I need to do, I’m going to do it.”
On getting to Boston: “I fly from Serbia.”
On meeting Kevin Garnett: “I’m excited to learn from him, but I’m excited to learn from everybody else, because that’s what Boston is all about. It’s about teamwork. It’s not about one guy; it’s about everybody. It’s a team. Whatever my job is going to be … we have a championship team, so all the pieces have to be together on the same page, because that’s how the championships are won — by the whole team playing well.”
On draft day expectations: “Those guys from Detroit, they thought they needed me to be the second pick, but right now to talk about that it’s kind of different. For me, I stopped chasing the dream as being the second pick a long time ago. All I was asking the people from the NBA, my teams that I played for before, let me be the best that I can be. At the beginning, I didn’t have a chance. … For me, for people to say, ‘Hey, you’re right, you should be the second pick,’ I’d have to have 50 points and 30 rebounds. Those guys are f@cking animals. LeBron [James], [Dwyane] Wade and all those guys [Carmelo Anthony and Chris Bosh], they’re great players, so for me to prove people wrong, I’d have to have 100 points and 50 rebounds a game. All I’ve been thinking in my career is that people let me be the best I can be, not be the second pick, just be the best I can be. In the beginning, I didn’t have a chance. I did make mistakes earlier in my career, but it is what it is right now. I never thought I would be here, playing with these guys for a championship. I’m going to do my best to stay here and fight for my position.”
On Rajon Rondo’s influence: “We already played two or three pickup games here the last two or three days. I played with him. It’s on a totally different level playing with him. It’s going to be fun playing with all these guys, but with him, especially an elite point guard like that who has unbelievable passes, he’s going to find you. If you’re open for a second, he’s going to find you. There’s no doubt. So, it’s great. It’s great playing with him already.”
Source: WEEI sports radio in boston
Honestly, I can't help but root for this guy even though he has let me down time and time again. He seems to have no self-confidence left, which can end a player's career outright. Let's hope KG and Doc can get something more from Darko, or this could be his last stop in the NBA.
Its so weird because he does have games where he totally puts it all together and looks like a top #5 pick, but 90% of the time he sucks. I remember 2 years ago he had like a 4 week span where he was looking amazing and even Durant tweeted that he was unstoppable, but then he had 1 bad game and never recovered.
Durant was kidding...
Durant was kidding...
Unless you're referring to the comment where he said "He was unbelievable tonight"
I know what you mean. Remember that game last year against the Lakers? He was the only guy keeping us in that game and ended up with a monster statline too.
Yeah or the game against the Spurs where he was like our whole team and carried us to OT before fouling out. Once he fouled out we couldnt do anything and the Spurs took the game.
Simply an enigma, dude..
He's not mentally tough, which is why he's never been able to put it all together
I think he could be good in Boston, A Shot Blocker, someone who can pass really good, and hit a mid range jumper, he and KG, or he and Bass both fit together on paper. Like He said he doesn't have to be the number 2 pick. He just has to play his part, and Doc Rivers and the Celtics will put him in the appropriate place.
Also I think his best time was when he was in Orlando playing the 4 with Dwight Howard, that first year he was traded. He's still only 27, not saying he's going to be an All-Star or anything, but he can be a good role playing big man. He could stay in the league a while as long as he's not expected to be the number 2 pick in the draft.
I honestly feel with Darko, we have to almost forget he was a number 2 pick and just accept that he can be a useful role player if used correctly. He did start to look a serviceable starter during his first year and half with the T-wolves but that team was the worse in the league and typically when they inproved, Darko regressed.
For a legit 7ft guy, his rebounding has always been poor, okay alongside D12 and K-Love this wasn't an issue but the Celtics will want this part of his game to improve as KG cannot carry that burden alone. But he is a good passer for a big guy and can run the floor so I'd figure the Celtics will look to involve him in some plays and just get him doing the basics and use his size more as nuisance value.
A lot could depend on how the rookies develop and how he competes with Wilcox and Jason Collins for the minutes Darko will sees around KG and Bass. If he plays well he can get 15 to 20mpg, if not then he could soon be out of rotation.
"On draft day expectations: “Those guys from Detroit, they thought they needed me to be the second pick, but right now to talk about that it’s kind of different"
No Darko, Detroit didn't need you to play like a "second round pick" because we didn't need that at that time. We just NEEDED you to play with some heart and some hustle...in which you could not even do that. Darko always tries to play the victim in every situation he's in but he has never once took responsibility for his f-ups. He does this with every team he's been on, its always someone elses fault. Once i was a darko fan in his earlier career, but after noticing this little trend of trying to play the victim i started to dislike this guy. I was like others hoping he's somehow "put the pieces together" but he won't.. Same picture, different frame.
Someones bitter. Detroit won a title anyways. Get over it. And don't say "we", you played no part nor will you ever play a part in any win or lose the pistons ever receive. End.
Im not at bitter at all...im just tried of people making excuses for Darko..He needs to man up to his mistakes. Never once have you heard him take fault and say "yea, i was immature at the time" or " i could've did this better" its always something else.
Well... If you read from the above article I posted, you can clearly see that he says, "I did make mistakes earlier in my career."
You're bitter. But you have every right to be, dude. He was a waste of a #2 pick. Could he have turned out to be worth it? Maybe. But we'll never know and that's a huge shame.
He did own up to what your saying. He took the blame. Just backing up the article.
I know this is an old post, but i have to reply back to this. Maybe he didnt pan out and it was a waste of a #2 pick but it was a free pick anyways, the pistons werent a bad team when they got that pick. It was from a trade, it wasnt a waste, it was just a free chance to get someone special. If anything it was karma, a team that didnt need the second pick to begin with, didnt score the TD in that draft. Im from orlando and i could argue that getting that #1 pick that got us dwight was a much bigger waste of a pick. The magic got a cornerstone peice that gave us hope for 8 years and never delivered and then whined his way out of town and basically landed us in the same position as we were in 2004. Thats a waste. You guys had a free shot that never panned out, no big deal, still got a ring that cant be taken away. BTW, the magic ended up getting darko and no lie, I knew people around here talking about how darko was gonna be an all star here. hahaha. A change of scenory was all he needed. lol. I guess he hasnt found the right scenery yet.
The Detroit pick will always be one of the greatest "what ifs" as the next 5 years they went to at least the Conference Finals and with a Bosh, D-Wade, Melo even Kaman, people will wonder how many more titles they may have got and more importantly they would have had a future building block for the post Billups, Big Ben, Sheed era?
If Coach Brown had given him minutes, I do wonder if the difference would have been that big, Darko was around a winning team but it never seemed to rub off on him and he had Big Ben, Sheed and Diceman to help mentor him. I think that being stuck on the bench did knock him back in the end and when he got minutes at Orlando, Memphis, T-Wolves he has shown flashes. But nothing like a top two pick, if he'd gone say 6 to 10 range, people might have said he is a disappointment but was still a serviceable big. Also he did nothing at the Knicks whose playing style should have suited him.
I've always been a bit of a Darko fan and think that when he is called a bust, he is the one with NBA career contracts worth over $50 million to his name and plus the money he could make back in Europe, he has not done badly for himself.
From the article: Milicic added: "I'll do whatever it takes, whatever I need to do to help this team. So now, if I have to go kill someone on the court, I'll kill someone on the court."
Ladies and gentleman, I give you Darko Milicic, hitman-for-hire.
Darko was the perfect example of a guy with great physical tools but who couldn't play basketball. He has never consistently played basketball very well. In that sense it isn't necessaryily his fault. People keep hiring him to play basketball and decide to pay him a lot of money. But he just is who he is. Go look at his per 36 stats. We've got ten years of them now. They haven't really changed all that much. 12 points, 8 rebounds and 2.5 blocks is what you get if you play him starter minutes. That's gone up and down from year to year but not by much. And he shoots a lousy percentage for a center, which kind of tanks the limite value of his other stats. Rondo will make him better, so I expect him to get easier shots at the basket and shoot a higher percentage. But I think Rondo can do that for anyone. Rubio is a real good passer and he couldn't make Darko good, so all I'm expecting is that Rondo makes Darko look mediocre. Good enough to be in the league but not really helping you win games.