Deadline this time went better for Brooks
The NBA returned to action after the all-star break with six games Thursday, and all of them tipped off long after the league’s 3 p.m. trade deadline. That wasn’t always the case, as Wizards Coach Scott Brooks knows better than most. On Feb. 23, 1995, Brooks was traded from the Rockets to the Mavericks for guard Morlon Wiley and a second-round draft pick, and he learned of the deal at halftime of the Rockets’ game against the Pistons.
“Aw man, why would you bring that up?” Brooks said Thursday when asked about the trade during his weekly appearance with the Sports Junkies on 106.7 The Fan. “I was having a good morning. That was one of the bad days of my life in the NBA. At halftime of the game, we go back, Coach [Rudy] Tomjanovich makes some halftime adjustments . . . . We come onto the court, and we’re in the layup line, and all of a sudden the general manager grabs me out of the layup line and says, ‘Hey, Scott, I got to talk to you.’ So he pulls me out of the line, brings me back to the locker room and he says, ‘Hey, you’ve been traded.’ I was like, ‘What?’ ”
Brooks thought the trade deadline had come and gone during the middle of the first quarter. His wife, who was sitting behind the bench, even gave him a thumbsup, thinking they would be staying put in Houston. The Rockets went on to repeat as NBA champions, while the Mavericks missed the playoffs.
“That was not a good night for me, but it ended up being pretty good,” Brooks said. “I wasn’t drafted as a kid coming out of college, and at that point I was [essentially] traded for two players.”
The following year, the NBA changed the trade deadline to 3 p.m.
“I don’t know if it’s officially called the Scott Brooks Rule, but I’m glad they did,” Brooks said.
This year’s trade deadline was decidedly better for Brooks, who saw his team add Bojan Bogdanovic and Chris McCullough from the Brooklyn Nets. Brooks spent part of the all-star break back home in California, but he said he was in regular contact with Wizards General Manager Ernie Grunfeld.
“We talked every day, and I haven’t had this in the past, where the general manager was like I was part of it,” Brooks said. “That was a good feeling to have, knowing that I’m part of the decisionmaking, and I feel very confident in what we did, and Ernie was working the phones and talking to people that needed to be talked to, and [senior vice president of basketball operations] Tommy Sheppard, they did a good job.” Excerpted from washingtonpost.com/dcsportsbog