Are you listening, Jerry Jones? How about you, Steinbrenner? This is what happens when an owner assumes that he is the equal of a GM or coach (or worse, better) in terms of how to run a team. You get the Corey Maggette conundrum.
The team's coaches believe Maggette is responsible for having single-handedly ruined team chemistry, separating himself from teammates to the point he sits at a table by himself when the coaches have a breakfast meeting on road trips in lieu of a morning shootaround. Maggette has had two reported confrontations with head coach Mike Dunleavy during, or after, games this season. While Dunleavy has taken the "high road" in discussing the incidents, don't doubt he would be much happier if Maggette were gone.
Why, then, is Maggette still with the Clippers? Ask Donald T. Sterling. He owns the team, and Maggette, we're told, is his favorite player. Sterling has nixed several possible deals already and has made it clear to Dunleavy and general manager Elgin Baylor they are not to do a Maggette trade he does not approve.
If you're wondering why Maggette started in Elton Brand's stead in the Clippers' game at Detroit on Monday night, it was because that game, unlike the team's previous game in Indianapolis, was televised back in Los Angeles. The coaches were hoping Sterling would see enough of Maggette's uninspired (and uninspiring) play to perhaps lift his embargo on a deal. Maggette didn't disappoint, missing seven of 10 shots in a blowout loss.
It was a nice run in relevancy for the Clippers. Hopefully for Mike Dunleavy and the rest of the Clips coaching staff, a trade can be consummated. In Maggette's defense, solitary breakfast is aaaaawesome. But, really -- an elitist with a bad attitude? From Duke? Naaaaahhhhh.