NBA Playoffs 2021 Preview, Bulls & NBA Talk with Horace Grant and Gary Payton

May 27, 2021

Join the BetUS Unfiltered Crew in today’s show as they talk about the NBA Playoffs 2021 Preview. They’ll discuss Kawhi and the Clippers, Chris Paul and the Suns, the Nets Big Three, and more! Plus, four-time NBA Champion and former NBA All-Star Horace Grant joins the show and talks about the Bulls and playing with and against Gary Payton.

BetUS Unfiltered Episode 31:
0:00 The Best of the Bulls
18:12 The Last Straw
22:14 A Family Affair
28:36 NBA Playoffs
52:44 Gary’s Fit With the Glove

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Audio Podcast

PODCAST TRANSCRIPTION
Dawn Lupul:
BetUS, America’s first book where you bet, you win, your ass gets paid all of the time-

Gary Payton:
No, you got to say your ass gets paid.

Dawn Lupul:
Your ass gets paid. Gary Payton is in the house. GP, what up, and we have a special guest today, Mr. Horace Grant, excited for what is to come, this show is going to be … It’s going to be out of control. Make sure you sign up, get a 125% bonus. We use the promo code VIDEO125 over at BetUS, like, subscribe, click the notification button so you don’t miss anything we do. Share and comment, you’re going to want to share this show. I might not want to share it to my mom but you’re going to want to share this show.

Dawn Lupul:
All right you two, you have a long history together. Horace … Of course, for the one person out there who might not know who Horace is, he is a former NBA player, played 17 seasons I believe, much like GP did. A lot of it was Chicago, won four championships, three in a row with the Bulls, and then had another win after that with the Lakers, and now working in a special position with the Bulls. We will get to all of that, we got so much to talk about. You were the number three guy behind Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen on the Bulls, forever. So, let’s start there. Let’s start with the best of the Bulls. I want to get right into the two of you playing together because Horace after you played with the Bulls for several years, you went to Orlando, and then you played in Seattle for one season. I’m giving Horace the floor first GP, you got to wait, you got to listen to this.

Gary Payton:
It’s all good.

Dawn Lupul:
When you walked in that team, it was apparently extremely dysfunctional, I don’t think that was in secret. What did you think when you first met GP and the gang?

Horace Grant:
Well, just by playing against GP … I mean, I knew what type of player he was. I mean, I knew he had a loud mouth. He had a loud mouth and-

Gary Payton:
Here he go, here he go.

Horace Grant:
[crosstalk 00:02:09] I mean, I had played with some of the greats before I went to Seattle. I played with MJ and Pip and Shaq and Penny Hardaway down in Orlando. So, when I got there, I expected GP … I think Vin Baker was on that team, also. I expected the same things, and which it was. And we made it to the playoffs and GP was one of the best leaders, seriously, that I ever played with, with Kobe and Shaq and Penny and Shaq, Scottie and Michael, he was just that type of leader. Whenever you stepped on the court with GP you had a better than ever chance of winning, that’s the confidence that he brought to that Seattle team.

Dawn Lupul:
GP, what do you remember about Horace?

Gary Payton:
And Dawn, where did you get where we were dysfunctional? We weren’t dysfunctional. No. No.

Dawn Lupul:
You were different.

Gary Payton:
No, when Horace came to Seattle, we were going to get Horace because we needed some more veteran leadership and plus that we had just got Vin Baker, and Vin Baker was coming in to something that was a little different than what he was with, with Milwaukee. We had just traded him, we had made a blockbuster trade, Shawn had left and this and that. We were going through something … we had just lost our coach in George Karl too. So, that year was a year that we were making drastic changes. The talent was there but we just needed somebody like Horace to come in and guide Vin Baker, and that’s why we went to go get Horace.

Gary Payton:
And it wasn’t nothing about us being dysfunctional. I had the team, it wasn’t like that, I could control a basketball team. It was that we needed something different because we were going from a whole different thing, from going to the champ finals, to losing to Chicago Bulls, then going through losing Shawn Kemp and Detlef Schrempf and stuff like that. And we were trying to just rebuild and it was hard to do that, just by myself, and we went and got Horace, and Horace came and then did wonders for us because what had happened is that he went into the locker room and he showed these guys how to be men, and how to be veterans, and that’s what we needed.

Gary Payton:
And like I said, we were going to make the playoffs, that was nothing. It was just, can we get back to the way we were and I didn’t think so, I knew we weren’t going to get back to where we were. I just wanted to be that steady person and Horace was that person because when they came to me, and they said what we need and who was out here, that was my first pick, it was Horace. I was like, “Yo, let’s get Horace Grant. Shit, he know how to win, he’d been in championships, he’d been playing with superstars all his career, let’s just try to get him to guide Vin,” because Vin didn’t know what was going on. And that’s what he did, he came in there and we went to the playoffs. We knew we wasn’t the good team … a really good team, but we were a good team enough to win games and try to upset people. And that’s we did, we made the playoffs and we were okay.

Dawn Lupul:
It was different then because George Karl, like you said, George was gone. The team had changed a lot. Of course, Paul Westphal was coaching then but there were still some moments, and we’ll mention the locker room. You brought up locker room, so I’m going to mention locker room because there were reports back in the day that poor Horace broke up a fight that was about to happen between GP and Vernon Maxwell but actually Gary, you kind of … few years later, came out and said it sort of didn’t happen that way. It was, you were waiting for Vernon and then Horace came around the corner and he got busted with the weight in the head.

Gary Payton:
Yeah, it was one of these things, and Horace will tell you. We were in practice and Vernon was upset about not playing. We had brought Vernon in too, he wasn’t getting the minutes that he thought he should be getting, and it was just a lot of turmoil right there. So, when Vernon went into practice, Vernon will take it out on everybody else. And so that day, I wasn’t in the mood for it. So, he was beating up on a lot of the other guys so I said, “Yo let’s switch. Let me be against Vernon so that I can calm him down,” but he ended up making me mad.

Gary Payton:
So, then I quit practice and then when it was over … And we used to go at it in practice and they would let us go at it, and I quit. And I said, yo it’s time to go, you know what I’m saying? Because I knew I was going to go crazy on him, so when I left and I started working out, they kept continuing to practice. So, I thought about it and I said, okay, I’m going to get him in the locker room. So, when he got in the locker room, Horace came in first and Horace is like, “Come on GP, man. We ain’t got to be doing all of that.” So, Horace was [inaudible 00:07:24] me, and I said, “Horace, I’m going to get him when he come. I’m just telling you right now, I’m going to get him.”

Gary Payton:
So, he was talking to gang and stuff and next thing you know, we were getting into it, and Horace was in the middle, and Horace was trying to stop it. And so, when I picked up the weight, I didn’t mean to hit Horace, and I hit Horace and broke his hand. And that made me feel real bad because Horace didn’t have anything to do with the situation, he was just trying to stop it, and I messed it up and Horace wound up missing a lot of the season because of that, because he broke his hand.

Dawn Lupul:
Horace, what do you remember from that moment?

Horace Grant:
Well, whenever you have a leader like GP, you have a player like Mad Max. When you got two guys, love the game of basketball, have passion about the basketball, wants to win, you going to have things like that. I mean, every team I’ve played on, it’s been like that. Every team. So, there was nothing new. GP was our leader and as we should, we should listen to him, and a lot of the guys didn’t want to listen, so …

Dawn Lupul:
He took care of it, as only GP could. That’s what the fans don’t understand, it’s this kind of stuff happens all the time. But, I mean, you guys … whatever … you go out for a beer after probably, right? And it’s business as usual as long as you’re winning on the court. What about GP’s mouth? What was it like playing against GP and then playing with him, that trash talking was a whole another level.

Horace Grant:
It’s the same if you’re playing with him or against him. He’s going to talk. GP is going to talk but the great thing about GP, I’m going to tell you, that he backs it up, on both ends. Not just on the offensive but both ends, and that’s one of the things that I respect about GP. He played both ends, it was just not shooting the ball, he went and played some hell of a defense. So, that’s what I respected but, man, the most … I don’t know if you can curse on here, but the most crap talker ever is GP.

Gary Payton:
Fucking trash talk [inaudible 00:09:48].

Dawn Lupul:
You can curse, it’s unfiltered.

Horace Grant:
Hold up, he’s the most shit talker ever played the damn game of basketball but everybody loved it because he got the fans hyped up, he got himself hyped up, and most of the time he got his opponent hyped up. So, it was great, [inaudible 00:10:10] great for basketball. And I wish they had some shit talkers like that in the game today.

Dawn Lupul:
Not anymore. Gary’s level of intensity, Horace, brought it every game. I mean, there was no off switch, I don’t think, to GP was there?

Horace Grant:
No.

Dawn Lupul:
No.

Horace Grant:
I mean, it was just on switch, another gear, another gear, another gear, another gear. That was it. It was no off not even off the court. It was no off.

Dawn Lupul:
GP how do you do that?

Horace Grant:
When we go out, at [crosstalk 00:10:41]. No, he was a different breed, he was cut from a different cloth, man. To be able to play both ends on the floor like that and talk shit about it. Man, that was very rare especially back in the day.

Gary Payton:
And, Dawn, in the day, it was a lot different. We didn’t have all this Instagram and all these phones and stuff like that, where we could do the stuff because we would have got in way more trouble back in the day than they would have been now because it would have been a lot of stuff that was video taped. So, we came with a lot of original stuff but, you know what, it was more of us in the day, is that, we could be homies but on the court we were enemies. And then we can go off the court and be cool.

Gary Payton:
Nowadays, this stuff is so buddy, buddy, that it’s crazy because I didn’t like Horace when he was with the Bulls because he was beating up on me, you know what I’m saying? But when I had a chance to play with Horace … and I had the fortunate chance to play with him twice, you know what I’m saying? I played with him with the Lakers and with Seattle. And then me and Horace became good friends, you know what I’m saying? And then we started going on NBA tours together, me and him started doing stuff together and we like that now. So that’s a friendship that you get in the time to do it, but basketball is way different. And when I was talking trash, we could do it, we could have fun, and we can forget about it. Nowadays, you stopping it, seeing if it’s a flagrant foul on the TV, you can’t have fun no more, you know what I’m saying?

Gary Payton:
So, it’s a big difference but like what Horace said, I’m just cut from different cloth. My daddy raised me a little different, it is what it is. I was on the streets of Oakland doing stuff, being who I was, and I had to grow up like that. I went to people’s different neighborhoods trying to beat up on them, talk crazy and then they wanted to fight me. That’s where I learnt all that stuff from and then I came to the NBA and a lot of people wasn’t cut to do that, you know what I’m saying? They wasn’t cut. Most people talk trash and they can’t back it up but I talk trash to you, I’m going to D you up, I’m going to get you buckets, and then I’m going to go home and be cool. I’m going to have a cocktail, me and Horace are going to have a cocktail afterwards, you know what I’m saying? It is what is.

Horace Grant:
Yeah. Hell yeah.

Gary Payton:
I’m going to have a cocktail with Horace after the game. I’m going to be like, yo, I said this to you … boy, you better not say that to me no more, I’m going to bust your head open and get him, grab him, [inaudible 00:13:26] on the head, do all that type of stuff. Yeah, that’s how it was, it was just fun during our time. It was just … That’s the way it was.

Dawn Lupul:
Horace, after you left the Sonics, you went to LA to play back again with Shaq and your former Bulls coach, Phil Jackson. From there you went back to Orlando and that didn’t end super well, Doc Rivers and you had a little bit of a thing. He didn’t say some very nice things about you at that time, he’s now the Philly coach, he spent a lot of the time with the Clippers. What do you remember from your return to the Magic?

Horace Grant:
It wasn’t a pleasant one but he said something about me that … And believe me, I said some shit about him too [crosstalk 00:14:13]. I look back on that and I remember, Doc was a young coach. He’s coming into his own with a brand new team and I was [inaudible 00:14:25] I’m in the twilight of my career, I wanted to be treated like a veteran and he wanted to treat me like a second year player, and that wasn’t going to happen. I mean, my knees … I mean, my back and my neck, and my knees are … listen. And I was there with … I think, was it Shawn Kemp was there? I think Shawn Kemp was on that team also. Doc and I exchanged words, he called me cancer in the locker room or some shit like that. But anyone who knows me, I’m not a cancer in the locker room, absolutely not. And he got fired from Orlando and he got the job with TNT, we talked, he came up. He said, “It shouldn’t have happened like that.” Apologized. It was over with. We’re men. Yeah, we’re men.

Dawn Lupul:
Exactly. You get over it. Obviously, you’re not a cancer because you’ve done a lot of work with the NBA in terms of being a goodwill ambassador. You’ve traveled all over the world promoting the sport. Still doing that, I believe, not doing so much promotion or traveling, but also your new role … Or it’s been a role for a few years now back with the Bulls. And doing … I’ll just read. Michael Reinsdorf has this quote, he says, “Horace is an incredible ambassador for the game of the basketball and you’ve brought that energy to that young team.” We saw Chicago improve this year, definitely, with I think it was 32 wins you ended up with and not too far out of being in a play in.

Dawn Lupul:
What has to happen next year, we’ll touch on the Bulls right now and then we’ll get into a few other things about the NBA, obviously. But three games out of a tie for eighth, so that was pretty good. Home record was only 15 in 21, your away record was 16 in 20. You need the fans back in Chicago.

Horace Grant:
Yes, I think the Bulls have … I mean, each year, they are making the step in the right direction. I think with Zach Lavine, an all star, such a talented player. And I think the trade with Vucevic, coming from Orlando. So, we had to give up some good pieces, Gafford, Wendall Carter Jr. But, I think that the Bulls need some three point shooting out there because Vucevic can [inaudible 00:17:04], or if they get the ball out of Zach’s hand, they’re going to need that three point shooting. And I think some more veteran leadership is needed also.

Dawn Lupul:
You need a guy like you, when you went to the Sonics? You need a you in this era?

Horace Grant:
Well yeah, bring it on. I can come back for a 10-day. [crosstalk 00:17:27]

Dawn Lupul:
Sign a [crosstalk 00:17:27] contract.

Gary Payton:
Hey man, you better stop that. You’re going to blow that mess out real quick.

Dawn Lupul:
Oh, it’s all good. Horace-

Gary Payton:
You better drop that.

Dawn Lupul:
For people that don’t know, Horace is six feet 10 inches tall. And the body’s holding up pretty good, you said.

Horace Grant:
Yes. I mean, I can lose about seven pounds but, hey, who’s counting the calories?

Dawn Lupul:
Yeah, you don’t have to, it’s all good. Something else we’ll clean up … We do a lot of cleaning on this show, don’t we, Gary? We just discuss things and get the air clean and then we move on. So, The Last Dance, you both have a connection to The Last Dance, [inaudible 00:18:12]. Horace, what wasn’t in The Last Dance that should have been, and I know you said it was quite a few things.

Horace Grant:
Well, I mean, what wasn’t in there was all the clap back, of course, MJ talked to guys certain way but, I mean, we were grown ass men. We’re not going to sit there and take it, we clapped back. None of that was in there. Not one time from myself, Ron Harper, all the guys … majority of the guys … from Stacey King … I mean, we all clapped back. There was none of that in there.

Gary Payton:
And Horace, he’s the one who produced the thing.

Horace Grant:
Listen.

Gary Payton:
He’s not going to put that back in there. He’s not going to do that.

Horace Grant:
Yeah, I mean, the crazy thing about that. I was the last person because I told them no all the way to the end. All the way to the end, I said, no I’m not getting in that. Then, I did it for … A friend of mine came to me and said, “Horace, just please do it. These guys keep calling me, calling me, you’re the last one.” So, I did it for him and end of … doing that shit again. Doing that shit again.

Dawn Lupul:
That’s enough. We cleaned that up, it’s all good. GP what’s the meanest thing you ever said to Jordan, do you remember anything specific? You trash talked, you enjoyed trash talking him.

Gary Payton:
Yeah, we said a lot of stuff man. Man, I mean, we used to go back and forth. You know the famous picture of me saying fuck you to him and stuff like that.

Dawn Lupul:
Usual.

Gary Payton:
He knew I wasn’t going to back down, and I knew he wasn’t going to back down. It was great, great memories of just going after each other. We only played each other twice a year. So, I probably will play him in November or December, then I probably wouldn’t get a chance to hit him again until March, you know what I’m saying? So, it will be three of four months in between. So, I would get it all out, we looked forward to be playing each other, you know what I’m saying? He was telling people I’ll put this on my calendar, I was saying, I was ready to put this one on my calendar, you know what I’m saying? So, I was waiting for them days, you know what I’m saying?

Horace Grant:
Hell yeah.

Gary Payton:
I would always go to … before the year started and when I’d look at our schedule and I’d figure out when we play them because that’s when that was going to be, you know what I’m saying? So, I just … that’s all I wanted to do, just look forward to that game.

Dawn Lupul:
Horace winning three championships in a row, obviously, not an easy thing at all because you get the target on your back, right? It’s tough enough to win one championship but you and the Bulls went on a run of three, was there somebody … a team on your calendar that you would always look forward to playing knowing that you were going to have an extra battle or it was just every single game you knew you had to be up because you were the defending champions?

Horace Grant:
Well, whenever you become champion and you have that target on your back, we got every A game from every opponent after winning that first and that second, and especially that third. I mean, we were their A game but to be honest, we loved playing … I mean, since GP is here. We loved playing guys like that. Talk. The Seattle’s, the Houston’s with Hakeem Olajuwon. We even desired to play the Pistons, even they beat our brains out for a few years. Teams like that, who’s going to make us work hard, make us … we’re going to have to play our A game, in terms of beating teams like that.

Dawn Lupul:
Yeah, and that’s why it’s so hard to win more than one year in a row. So, to do it three times is definitely special. Let’s talk about family because this applies to both of you. Let’s start with you, GP because Gary Payton II ended up finishing out the year with the Warriors, and it looks like … I don’t think he’s signed a contract yet … There was news that broke that he did sign a two year but I’m not sure it’s been finalized yet-

Gary Payton:
Yeah, he signed a two year deal. He’ll be back here on June the seventh. He’s got a two year deal with Golden State, he has to come here and work out, get accustomed to the team. Draymond Green, who people know doesn’t really step up for everybody really likes him and he steps up for him for the organization and the organization brought him back.

Gary Payton:
Steph Curry loves him too so it’s good for my son to come here and be in the summer and work, you know what I’m saying? The things that he went through … You go through these types of situations and it just makes you see how tough you can be. To me I really wish that he could have grew up like his dad, but he couldn’t. His dad grew up in a situation and got him out of that situation, and he grew up with a silver spoon in his mouth. So, if you think he would have grew up in Oakland then it would have probably changed different. But, you go through things, you know what I’m saying? It’s just like, you see Horace’s nephews, great basketball players, you know what I’m saying? They got the opportunity and they took advantage of it, you know what I’m saying? And now look at them, they’re playing out of control, getting paid and everything and I know Horace is proud of his nephews.

Horace Grant:
Of course.

Gary Payton:
So, I’m proud of my son and now what I have to do is because it’s a situation, and I’m happy that he’s here and I get to see him all the time and I get to go and help him during the summers, you know what I’m saying? He could come by, play with my team and work out, and me and him can more chat because it was never done like that. I can get some more chatting with him, I can get some more talking. He can come over the house, he can chill, we can look at stuff together, and I can groom him.

Gary Payton:
So, it’s good, you know what I’m saying? It’s a good thing and it started just recent. Right after they lost to the Memphis Grizzlies, the next day he came over and he spent eight hours with me. Me and him have been here playing golf on a machine, and we’re playing ping pong and then all the boys come over, and we’re doing all that, we’re in the backyard, we’re putting on the putting ring. So, it started already, you know what I’m saying? So, I’m very happy for him and I’m glad the Warriors gave him an opportunity to do what he had to do.

Dawn Lupul:
Yeah, congratulations to him, it’s exciting to see. Of course, Horace, basketball runs deep in your family too. Your twin brother, Harvey played, mostly for the Washington Bullets. What was that like growing up back in Georgia, way back in the day? How did you both get into basketball at an early age?

Horace Grant:
Let me give a shout out to little g. Congratulations man, tell the boy congratulations man.

Gary Payton:
Appreciate it. Yeah.

Horace Grant:
Man. We started early. We started playing basketball at nine or 10 years old. Being the tallest kids in the classroom and around your neighborhood, our JV coach said, guys come out for the team. And going out and playing basketball keeps you off the streets, keeps you out of trouble, keeps you from doing things that you’re not supposed to do.

Horace Grant:
So, we just dove into basketball, fell in love with it, and you can say the rest is history because … My brother and I were so competitive with each other. Man, I mean, we’d say, “One on one, the best out of five.” I kick his ass, and he’ll start, “Okay, let’s best out of seven.” And seriously, I’m not exaggerating, we’d end up fighting, physically. And then we’d get tired, and then we’d just walk home, just talking to each other like it’s never happened. That’s how close we are and that’s how we made each other better as basketball players, hopefully as men.

Dawn Lupul:
Gary mentioned your nephews, of course, Jerai, Jerian, and Jerami, who … A couple of them are playing … You said a couple of them are over in Europe right now?

Horace Grant:
Greece, yes.

Dawn Lupul:
In Greece, yeah.

Horace Grant:
Jerain, who used to play for the Knicks and the Bulls and the Wizards, he’s over in Greece. And Jerai, who went to Clemson, he’s the eldest, he’s over in Greece. They’re on the same team playing, and this is how close my nephews are with each other, as soon as the season was over with the Pistons, Jerami got on a plane, went over to support his brothers. He’s over there now, chilling out in Greece, sunshine, having a few cocktails. Damn. Fuck it.

Gary Payton:
Ain’t nothing wrong with that.

Horace Grant:
Ain’t nothing wrong with that, dog.

Dawn Lupul:
It was a tough sell for him to go over there.

Horace Grant:
Yeah. But they’re doing great and Jerami had a great year in Detroit. The team didn’t do as well but he came into his own with great opportunities and Coach Casey down there. I know him from the Seattle days with GP so he’s in good hands.

Dawn Lupul:
He’s a cool guy, he was of course coach of Raptors … Toronto Raptors for-

Horace Grant:
Oh, that’s right.

Dawn Lupul:
Yeah, so it was sad when he left because we … I mean, especially the way that he left, he was coach of the year.

Horace Grant:
Coach of the year, exactly.

Dawn Lupul:
Yeah, yeah so it was [crosstalk 00:28:14]-

Gary Payton:
And just had 155 games.

Dawn Lupul:
Yeah, yeah, and they said bye-bye. So, you never know but they won a championship so we won’t take it away from them. One guy who I’m not super happy about … We will transition into today’s NBA, you can guys drop stories in wherever you want. I love to hear about it, hitting people with weights and stuff, it’s all good stuff.

Dawn Lupul:
But, what’s going on today, we’ll talk about … Let’s start with Kawhi and the Clippers because Kawhi, unlike Dwane Casey, I’m not sure that people in Toronto … We don’t hate on him but we were extremely disappointed when he left after winning the championship here and deciding to go. I can’t blame him, he was going back home, it was a different opportunity. I think that he thought he was going to slide into LA land and be the king. Lebron, that other guy, with that other team wasn’t going to be the king but what do the Clippers do now? They’re saying … GP let’s start with you. They’re down 2-0 right now and Doncic has pretty much been manhandling that team.

Gary Payton:
Well, Dawn, let’s go to Kawhi. Kawhi went home. I don’t fault him for doing that, I don’t think he wanted to go to the Lakers, he had the opportunity to go to the Lakers and be with the king, but as a guy who had just won a championship and who was probably that superstar of the time right then, is not going to go and team up. He’s just don’t have that type of mentality as these other kids do, and go and team up with that guy. So, he took the Clippers because he thought the team was [inaudible 00:29:47].

Gary Payton:
But we have to understand. The Clippers, to me, have something over their heads. It’s something that doesn’t let them be who they are, you know what I’m saying? This team always has bad luck. It is what it is. They went and fired Doc Rivers, we were talking about Doc, I don’t think that was a good fire. I really don’t. I think he was doing a great job with that team, and then you … And I’m not going to take nothing from Tyronn Lue because that’s one of my best friends, you know what I’m saying? So, it’s like … You don’t change coaches and stuff like that and expect to make a change if you don’t make a change in your personnel. Your personnel, the team is still the same. I mean, it’s still the same.

Gary Payton:
They need something else, they need that third person who can play. When you got Paul George, he had 28 and then Kawhi had 41 and they still lose, but the Dallas team has a lot of more players, to me, that can score. Hardaway Jr., Porzingis, Luka, you know what I’m saying? These guys, they scoring, you know what I’m saying? And you got three or four different ways, when you have only two players on the Clippers who can get, all you got to do is tee off on them. You let one of them get 40 and then the other one, you average, you do it … But if you’re not getting nothing from nobody else, you’re not going to win basketball games like that. I’m telling you. You can’t win in the playoffs like that.

Gary Payton:
You can’t let one guy get 40 and then, all of a sudden, the other guys do not perform. We seen it last night with the Phoenix Suns. See, Chris Paul gets hurt. Now, Booker goes back to the player that he was when they weren’t winning. He could score thirty-something points but we don’t beat y’all, you know what I’m saying? So, it doesn’t happen, and I think Kawhi has seen this. But I think that … I don’t think he’s going nowhere. I think he’s going to have to go into that organization and say, “Look, y’all got to give me somebody who can play,” you know what I’m saying? Give me some more pieces, I need another shooter. I need another that can score. Lot of people will come to LA, let me just tell you, just because LA.

Gary Payton:
So, you can get another superstar and Kawhi needs to do that, but they’re not … I just think they just got a jinx on their whole organization because they’re getting manhandled right now, and that boy Luka is … And we can’t take nothing off Luka, that’s a great basketball player. He’s just a talent. He can do everything, he can score buckets, he makes everybody better.

Gary Payton:
When they start doubling him, what did he do? He took his time, pace, wait to the double, bang. A straight dime on somebody and then they were attacking. See, they weren’t hesitating like some other players will be. If you watch some of these teams, who got superstars like that, they’ll be hesitant. These dudes were attacking the basket and they were making shots, and that’s what the team is about, about having a lot of more different players around you, who got confidence, but he makes that confidence in them players. Luka does that, you know what I’m saying? On that Clipper team, the other two don’t give them other guys confidence to make shots. They’ll be like, “No, no, I want to take a bad shot before I give it to you,” you know what I’m saying? So, it’s a whole different program here.

Gary Payton:
And I think Dallas got their number but Dallas plays them well all the time. Dallas had them last year and they should have beat them, you know what I’m saying? And they escaped, and I think this year it won’t happen.

Dawn Lupul:
He’s 22 years old, Doncic, it’s insane to see what he’s doing. Horace, they’re 0-2 … sorry, go ahead, Gary.

Gary Payton:
Well, Dawn, he been like 22 all his life [crosstalk 00:33:47] 14.

Horace Grant:
Yeah.

Gary Payton:
That just makes it all even better because he been 22 since he was 14 because he was playing with 22 year olds. He already got advanced.

Dawn Lupul:
Yeah. So, he’s an old 22. Horace, they’re down 0-2 and it’s not like they’ve been very close games at all, I mean, they got beat the first game, 113-103-

Gary Payton:
103.

Dawn Lupul:
And the second game 127-121, how do they dig out of that hole?

Horace Grant:
Well, the first mistake when they let Harrell and sweet Lou, when they traded them … or when they let Harrell go as a free agent. Those were mistakes for them in my humble opinion. They were up 3-1 on Denver last year and they forgot how to play defense-

Gary Payton:
Horace, they don’t know how to play defense now.

Horace Grant:
True. True but going back to Dallas, when Luka got it going like that. Man, I would have threw everything at him, the kitchen sink and everything, and fortunately for Dallas, part of the way Jr. and the guys made shots, they attacked the basket, but I think my man Ty Lue, who I was with, with the Lakers, that’s my dog. They going to have to come up with a plan, somehow, to contain Luka because that young man is eating them up for lunch. And the crazy thing about it is they have two of the best defensive players in Kawhi and Paul George, I mean, stick both of them on Luka if they have to. You going to have to contain that young man in order for them to get back into the series.

Dawn Lupul:
Well when you have-

Gary Payton:
But you know what, Horace … No, I’m sorry, Dawn.

Dawn Lupul:
No, go ahead.

Gary Payton:
You know what, you’re saying the right thing Horace about it because we played basketball so long, but they don’t practice that Horace, you see what I’m saying?

Horace Grant:
Right.

Gary Payton:
So, when they trap Luka and they put Paul on him … Paul George or Kawhi on him, when he comes off the picks because they’re going to pick him in pick and rolls because they want to get the switch. So, when they do that, why not just have the man switch out and then when he switch out let Paul George or Kawhi go back to him, and then the man rotate out and they get the roller and then they run all over. See, we don’t teach that anymore to get it because what they’re doing now is … all they’re doing is trapping him, and when they hit it … all they’re doing is if Tim Hardaway Jr. hits a three, they’re running and be scared and then everybody’s [inaudible 00:36:44] and then they’re hitting another pass and Porzingis is hitting the duck. He’s bucking the basketball and it’s no defense there, so their defense is terrible.

Horace Grant:
You got to … GP, and you know this from our days, you got to want to play defense. You got to want to play defense, man. You were not loved back in the day playing defense, and I sit here and watch some of the defensive schemes and guys putting half hearted to play it, man, if I had hair … It’d be gray … Defense … Defense.

Dawn Lupul:
What does Ty Lou do? I mean, these are elite players, do you … What does he do to … I don’t even think it’s motivation. What can he do now?

Horace Grant:
He has to tell each and one of guys on that team, look at yourself in the mirror and you ask yourself, did I do whatever it took to help win this game? Each guy is going to have to look at themselves in the mirror in order for them to come out and compete and not go down 0-3.

Gary Payton:
And then I got to say this too, Dawn, is that, he has to look at what match-ups that are just not working for him. [inaudible 00:38:16] on the floor. Yesterday, he had Beverley on the floor and what did they do, they put him in a pick and roll and then they put Luka one on one with him. And as you see at the end of the game with two minutes to go, when Luka defended him and Beverley is running around there [inaudible 00:38:34], he took you straight to the bucket and he laid it up easily and then he looked at Beverley and was like, “You can’t guard me.” So, you have to know your personnel. I don’t think Beverley should be in the game during that time because he can’t get you on the other end to score, so he’s just hopping around and that defense is not working. The way Beverley plays, he has to be up, he has to be on high roll but he wasn’t.

Horace Grant:
That’s a great point, GP. Why did you bring Rondo there and not play him?

Gary Payton:
He only played 19 minutes yesterday, that was crazy.

Horace Grant:
Thank you. 19 minutes.

Gary Payton:
That was crazy.

Horace Grant:
Man. This man, Rondo, helped win two championships. One of the best IQ as a point guard, who would get that team … get the guys in their right spots and put that ball there. I mean, his experience is invaluable, man. So, I would say to my man Ty Lou, play Rondo a little bit more.

Gary Payton:
And I think that’s what he’s going to do, Horace. I think he’s going to go evaluate it there, in a whole. And with this organization right now, they’re under pressure right now. If they don’t win this year, they’re going to break this team up because the owner has know that he made a mistake, I think, in firing Doc. He made a mistake, it wasn’t Doc’s fault. Doc did a great job with that team, and I think that, what he has to understand is now he made a decision to do that and bring in Ty Lou, he’s got to get Ty Lou an opportunity to coach this team with good players, and players that can do the thing you do.

Gary Payton:
It’s like you said, Horace, you got to evaluate it. I would have Rondo on the floor, I don’t care what it is, I would rather have him in a switch, pick and roll because he can get his hands on a lot of balls. He can get [inaudible 00:40:41] to the ball, he can penetrate, he can make the right plays to these players, break things down. He’s that type of basketball player, and I’ve always said it. There’s only two true point guards in the NBA right now, that’s Chris Paul and Rondo, that’s it, you know what I’m saying? Nobody else.

Gary Payton:
So, I think he has had to evaluate … he’s going to have to evaluate it because if he don’t, you go down 3-0, he’s in trouble. This game, coming up, is his make or break game. If they lose this game, this team is in trouble and this organization is going to make a drastic change this summer. Drastic. They’re going to do a lot of seeking, I think one of the two big ones, big guys, is going to have to go, you know what I’m saying? They’re going to have to go do something else. So, Ty Lou is on the hot seat himself, I don’t really think he should be but they’re going to … You know how it go, Horace, goes straight to the coach.

Horace Grant:
There’s going to be some soul searching before their next game.

Dawn Lupul:
Paul George re-signed, Kawhi Leonard is going to be a free agent so that might be what ends up happening there. They’ve now lost five playoff games in a row. So, there has to be some soul searching, they will be in Dallas on Friday to continue that series. Let’s just mention … Give a shout out to the Knicks fans, you want to talk about … It’s nice to see fans in stadiums, we’re all enjoying that, that’s the best part but the way that the Knicks fans are embracing their team because it has been a long dry spell, that is so good for the league. I mean, I get to be a bit of Knicks fan just watching how much fun they’re having there, Horace, that’s got to lift the players up unbelievably a whole lot.

Horace Grant:
I mean, you look back on, Dawn, the history of Knicks basketball. I think they won it in, was it ’72? Around ’72.

Gary Payton:
That’s when Phil was there.

Horace Grant:
Yeah, that’s when Phil was there. But the fans, the passion of the Knicks fans, I mean, you can arguably say that they’re some of the best fans in the world. And the drought, man, what has it been 15 years before they made the playoffs, but you have to give credit to the fans but give credit to Leon Rose, coming in there, Wes, the coach [crosstalk 00:43:14]. But you give credit to Julius Randle, Derrick Rose, and Barrett. I mean, those guys … listen man. I love watching the Knicks right now. They play hard, they play smart 99.9% of the time, they bringing their glory back to the garden which we all love.

Gary Payton:
What I like about it, Horace and Dawn, is that you got Spike Lee on the side doing the stuff he did in the suits, you know what I’m saying? You seen that when he was going crazy in the second quarter making big shots, and plus this is young basketball team that they have beaten into Thibodeau’s system. Every body said Thibodeau was a hard coach, he couldn’t coach young players but he has adjusted to it and made them buy into it, and they’re playing with a lot of relaxation and [inaudible 00:44:10]. Give kudos out to Julius Randle who’s just won the Most Improved today, you know what I’m saying?

Gary Payton:
So, it’s like you got the fire back, you got it back. If you didn’t come with the young kid, Trae, who made the big shot, they’ll probably be up 1-0 right now. They’re playing very good basketball and I think that all of them know their role. They know that Randle is the man, give him the ball, you guys get ready … we get ready, if he get it to us, make shots. If the other one goes in there, do your thing. We don’t have egos on this team because they’re young and they let Randle be the man. He made the All-Star team this year. [inaudible 00:44:56] first time ever, doing stuff like that.

Gary Payton:
And then, Horace, I’ll tell you, this is what I see, on players like this. Randle goes to the Lakers, wasn’t a fit for him, everybody saying he’s a bust. You have to go to the right team. Ingram goes to the Lakers, wasn’t the right team, goes to New Orleans and then what happens? He becomes a superstar, you know what I’m saying? It’s people that got to be let out of their thing and this guy has came and been the leader of the Knicks and now it’s showing, it’s showed them. For them to jump from nowhere and take the fourth seed this year … I was kind of biased because I wanted him to be co Coach of the Year, with Monty, you know what I’m saying? I wanted him, it should have be [inaudible 00:45:48] of the Year because he has did a great job with the Knicks, Monty has did a great job with Phoenix, but I think it should have been co because both of them did it. They jumped from not even being thought about and horrible and talked about all the time, to the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference.

Horace Grant:
GP, getting back to your Ingram and Randle. It’s all about that system that you’re comfortable with. It’s all about that system. They’re in a system now, where they’re flourishing, as All-Stars, and it’s forced the whole … I mean, I concur with you, it should be co Coaches of the Year. I mean, think about where the Knicks have been before Tom Thibodeau got there, think about them. I mean, they were … I mean, people had bags over their heads. It was just that bad. Kudos. Kudos.

Dawn Lupul:
It was said here on Unfiltered today, Horace Grant saying I actually love watching the Knicks, something you couldn’t say for a very long time so we wish them … It’s good for the league, it’s good for everyone, it’s good for that kind of fan base too. We got a couple minutes left guys, couple of quick questions. I’m going to start with you, GP. Can the Nets win with no defense? Just with their big three playing, for the most part, isolation. Can you win a championship doing that?

Gary Payton:
As we seen them against Boston, they’ve been just really demolishing Boston. It’s not even really a series, Brown is not in, Tatum got hurt with his eye yesterday. They beat them by like 22. Going through the East, to me, yes you can get to the East but I’m going to tell you this … And I said it, Dawn, before, the Milwaukee team without this target on their back, usually have a target because they’re the number one, they’re playing great basketball right now. And if Brooklyn comes and plays, it’s going to be a hell of a series and I don’t know if they can play without defense, that they need.

Gary Payton:
They’re going to have to buckle down and see what happens because you’re going to get to a West, where all the teams play D, all of them. You got the number one team defense [inaudible 00:48:18], and then the Lakers … All them teams come and play defense. Utah plays defense, everybody plays defense because if they get to the finals, it’s got to be a whole different situation because these guys are going to make them be accountable for a lot of things. But they got the big three and I still like they’re doing it, they’re going through Durant and everybody else comes second. It is what it is. Yesterday, it was 26 for Durant, 20 by Harden, 15 by Kyrie, they’re going to have to play that way if they’re going to continue to win and be a good system to do that. And if they do that and they go through that kid, Durant, who has won championships, and done it with the Golden State Warriors and did it really well, they have a big chance of winning this thing.

Gary Payton:
But right now everything, to me, I could toss it up and hope that one of them balls come down and we see the team and it’s the champ because I don’t know who’s going to win this, right now, I don’t know.

Dawn Lupul:
It’s exciting. Horace, what team are you focusing in on, right now. Do you have a favorite? Is Brooklyn going to be stoppable?

Horace Grant:
I think if … You can’t gauge Brooklyn right now against a depleted Boston, The Celtics, because without Brown and Tatum hurt, things of that nature. If I was Brooklyn, I’d be working on some defensive schemes to play that next opponent because they will be beat Boston, four or five games, so we don’t know. But, I always try to work on some defensive schemes. They’re not a terrible defensive team, they could be better. I mean, KD blocking some shots last night, from the weak side, things of that nature but in order to beat the elite teams in the East like a Philadelphia 76ers or Milwaukee Bucks, you’re going to have to play better defense.

Dawn Lupul:
Defense in the playoffs.

Horace Grant:
Yeah, I look for them to be favorites coming out the East just because of the firepower of the big three.

Dawn Lupul:
That would freak some things out if all of a sudden they started playing defense because everyone’s expecting that that’s not going to happen. Horace, the last word goes to you before we get to GP’s fit with the glove, but a story about GP that you might not have shared before. Just your overall impressions playing with GP or Michael or anybody that you played with. You played such a long time in the NBA, again, now an ambassador. It’s been your whole life. You wore the goggles for people who remember and then when you got the surgery, you kept wearing the goggles because you had found out that kids were looking up to you, kids who needed corrective lenses, so you kept wearing them. You’re just an all around good guy.

Horace Grant:
Thanks.

Dawn Lupul:
What was GP, was he an all around good guy?

Horace Grant:
Oh, listen man. I mean, I give everyone the benefit of the doubt. You hear stuff like, this guy blah blah blah … But, man, when I stepped down in Seattle and went to practice got to know … Listen man, what a genuine and a loyal human being. I mean, straight from here. Loved playing with him. Man, I mean, he’d get the team going, he’d get the crowd going. He gets into the opponent’s head, loved that, loved that, loved being a teammate of GP’s. We’re going to [inaudible 00:52:17] not even think twice about it. And off the court, some great ass parties.

Gary Payton:
I knew you were going to come there.

Horace Grant:
Yeah, yeah.

Dawn Lupul:
[crosstalk 00:52:32].

Gary Payton:
I knew you were going to come there.

Dawn Lupul:
[crosstalk 00:52:32]

Horace Grant:
Yeah, that’s my dude.

Dawn Lupul:
We’ll drink some California wine and we can hear some of those stories [inaudible 00:52:37]. GP, I’m going to give the last word to you. Horace, you are a delight but GP, we are going to have a little fit with the glove. What is on that mind of yours this week?

Gary Payton:
Well, Dawn, this is hard. One thing, thanks Horace for all the great compliments and you know you my boy for [inaudible 00:52:58], we tight as heck, you know what I’m saying? We like one, you know what I’m saying? So, me I have to say this, playing with Horace was great, you know what I’m saying? And becoming friends with him is like a glove, it fits like a glove to be a friend with him, you know what I’m saying?

Gary Payton:
The thing that I love about Horace is that whenever he had got his eyes messed up or whatever and he started putting them goggles on and stuff, he started reminding me of Superman, when you turn into somebody else. So, when I finally got with him in Seattle and Lakers, I always used to mess with him. I used to always mess with him. I used to always hide stuff from him, goggles, we would put goggles in there, different ones, we would put swimming goggles, all the stuff in there, man. But Horace was so good with everything that he did, that he was always funny. He was always approachable, he was always the team mate that you wanted to have because if anything went down, as he got hurt in that scuffle, he was right there to settle it because he wanted to be that guy. That guy to be, “Look, man, we don’t need to be doing this. We don’t need to do that, let’s think about all of this.” And then off the court he’d be great. So, the goggles was the thing for me, and I used to call him The Goggle Man, you know what I’m saying? Goggle Man-

Horace Grant:
I remember that.

Gary Payton:
We was going on things … We was going on adventures and we was going on events together, everybody used to pull out the goggles. Horace would have to sign the goggles, that was a guy that you wanted to be around, and if I would go in the trench holes, he’d go to the trench holes with me but I’d go in the more trenches with him. I’d be in there with bullets, taking shots for him, put everything.

Horace Grant:
Appreciate it.

Gary Payton:
And to me, that was the guy and a teammate that I liked. If I had to put my top three teammates, it would be Shawn Kemp, Horace Grant, and Shaquille O’Neal. They’re my top teammates to go with and that’s what I’m going to talk about right now. That’s what fits like a glove, that I have three guys who can work with me and be that type of guy. If I would give anybody gloves, it would be them three, and we would be like the three amigos or the four musketeers because that’s the three guys I would go into battle with any day, and say it. And everybody asks me this all the time, who are the best players that you ever played with? It’s not about the best players, it’s about the guy and the personality that you be with, and the best personalities that I have [inaudible 00:55:52] brotherhood is Shawn Kemp, Horace Grant, and Shaquille O’Neal, and that’s my fit like a glove because they fit me like a glove because they like my brothers.

Horace Grant:
Appreciate it, bro, appreciate the love.

Gary Payton:
Always. Always.

Dawn Lupul:
Appreciate that. Horace Grant you are a wonderful human being, you were an All-Star, four-time championship winner, now we just need to get you into the hall of fame. There is a lot of people who feel that you definitely belong there and you can join Mr. Gary Payton there. Make sure you share this show and write some comments down below, show our guys some love, like and subscribe the video. Again, sign up at BetUS, 125% bonus using the promo code VIDEO125. You guys made me feel inspired, I feel like getting a basketball and throwing it around although I’d probably break a window so maybe I won’t. Enjoy the playoffs, this is one of the most exciting seasons, it is so good to have fans back as we start to move closer to getting our lives back after what has been a very challenging year-and-a-half. This is Unfiltered, brought to you by BetUS, America’s favorite sport book where you bet, you win, and your ass gets paid.

Gary Payton:
Gets paid.

Dawn Lupul:
How’s that? We’ll see you next week.

Horace Grant:
All right.

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