Sources: Knicks Interested In Jermaine O'Neal
Sources: Knicks showing strong interest in Phx's Jermaine O'Neal.
Edited by LALakersFan4Life, April 18, 2013 - 10:11 PM.
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Posted February 21, 2013 - 12:23 AM
Suns May Buyout Jermaine O'Neal
Marc Stein @ESPNSteinLine
Word is Knicks will be at front of line to try to sign Jermaine O'Neal if Phoenix consents to buy JO out to make room for Marcus Morris
Posted February 24, 2013 - 07:24 PM
Jermaine O'Neal Not Seeking Buyout From Suns
By Marc Stein | ESPN.com
After the passing of the NBA trade deadline Thursday and a post-deadline meeting with team officials, Phoenix Suns center Jermaine O'Neal told ESPN that he is staying with the Suns as opposed to seeking a buyout of his contract.
The New York Knicks, Boston Celtics and other playoff-bound teams, according to NBA front-office sources, were hoping to sign O'Neal next week if he could extricate himself from his Phoenix contract.
But O'Neal said he feels too close a bond to the Suns and his teammates, after a season filled with off-court difficulties, to leave the team to now pursure an opportunity with a playoff team.
O'Neal, in his 17th season, was sidelined earlier this season by an irregular heartbeat. The 34-year-old also found out recently that his 13-year-old daughter will have to undergo her own heart procedure next month after a longstanding illness.
"Obviously, I've been through a lot this year," O'Neal said. "And these guys have been very supportive. When I met with some of the guys after the Golden State game (Wednesday night) to talk about what I was going to do, I was a little emotional about it, to be honest with you.
"Obviously, you'd like to win more games at this point of your career. We all want to have more wins and losses, but ultimately it came down to the fact that, sometimes, it means more to stay and finish the job than running to that shiny new car that's trying to drive to the championship.
"To me, it would have sent a bad message to the guys that have been there for me to say, 'I'm going to leave now and go compete for a championship.' (Suns owner Robert) Sarver made a commitment to me and I want to finish the job, do what I signed up to do and help this team and help this city build some positive momentum going into next year."
O'Neal has had a productive season in Phoenix despite the challenges he and his family have faced on top of his own heart scare, otherwise benefiting from his exposure to the Suns' highly regarded training staff in his recovery from a wrist problem and knee woes that have plagued him throughout his career.
O'Neal has averages of 7.2 points and 4.8 rebounds in just under 17 minutes per game this season.
O'Neal said he's not sure how much longer he intends to play beyond this season but is already planning to return to Germany in the offseason for another round of the treatment that has made his left knee feel better than it has in years.
"You see me playing without those big braces," O'Neal said. "It really works."
Posted February 24, 2013 - 07:28 PM
Jermaine O'Neal Not Interested In Chasing Championship
By Mark Murphy / Boston Herald
PHOENIX — Questions about his NBA future leave Jermaine O’Neal in a painful pause.
The Suns center and former Celtic, who claims to have found basketball peace under new Phoenix coach Lindsey Hunter, has moved on from his sport of the last 17 years in many respects.
O’Neal was worried he had suffered a heart attack earlier this season, but the symptoms turned out to be an irregular heartbeat. Also, a beloved aunt died from a stroke and aneurysm.
And his daughter, 13-year-old Asjia, is scheduled to have heart valve surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital on March 5. O’Neal will leave the Suns to be at his daughter’s side, with the rest of his Dallas-based family, for three days starting on the day of surgery.
“I don’t know if God is trying to tell me something, because I’ve had to fly back to my family quite a bit this year,” he said before last night’s 113-88 C’s win. “My girl just had a balloon put in her chest three days ago. When you’re 17 years into the league, you have to look at that.”
Asjia is undeterred by the prospect of heart surgery. Like her father, she’s an athlete.
“My daughter is 13 years old and she has a chance to be one of the best volleyball players in the country — 6 feet tall, 158 pounds. College coaches are already calling about her,” said O’Neal. “She has a leaky valve that’s making her heart work too hard. She’s having complications.
“We’ll be (at Mass. General) from the 4th to the 8th of March. I’m positive everything will go well,” he said. “My daughter is actually taking it better than me and the mother. We haven’t told her that, but we talked about it yesterday and she said, ‘Let’s get it over with.’
“She started playing volleyball this year and has really taken to that. The biggest thing for her is that she couldn’t play volleyball (with her condition). She’s not talking about surgery. Me and her mother are talking about surgery, but she’s talking about volleyball.”
“She played soccer in Boston for a couple of years, and you could tell, she’s not going to play soccer. She’s not interested in basketball because she’s been around it for too long with me. As a father, you want the best for her and I have to be there.”
Little wonder that any mention of O’Neal’s career forces him to hesitate. He talks of how Suns teammates expressed a desire for him to remain in Phoenix in the days leading up to Thursday’s trading deadline. O’Neal said he simply wasn’t interested in several publicized opportunities to join contenders, including some outreach by the Knicks.
“I’m no longer looking to go and try to win a championship. When you don’t fit, it looks like you can’t play,” said O’Neal, who admits to savoring his surroundings a little more. “Basketball justifies a lot for people, but I don’t need that. I have a great family, and that’s my concentration.
“This year I’ve enjoyed going into every arena for some reason. I’ve enjoyed the bus rides, the dinners, the locker room stuff, all of that. Maybe it is the last one.”
Posted April 18, 2013 - 10:11 PM
Jermaine O'Neal Leaning Towards Return
Phoenix Suns center Jermaine O'Neal is leaning strongly towards playing next season.
The 2013-14 campaign would be his 19th NBA season.
The 34-year-old has played in 55 games for the Suns this season, a three-year high.
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