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Paul Millsap on letting his play speak for itself, why he made the 'MMA' comment about Wizards

Paul Millsap on letting his play speak for itself, why he made the 'MMA' comment about Wizards

One day after the Hawks' Game 1 loss, Paul Millsap said he was intent on not letting the trash talk by Markieff Morris and the Wizards get to him, that he wanted to let his play speak for itself. Since, he has appeared to accomplish that. There have been some words exchanged in the media, but mainly from the Wizards and meanwhile Millsap has played well while Morris has struggled while dealing with foul trouble.

It's now a 2-2 series and Millsap feels he is doing just what he set out to do.

"They key to doing that is just shutting the hell up. That's it," he said about letting a back-and-forth through the media affect his game. "It's all about being a professional, man. We all know what are the right things to say. We know the politically correct answers. We know what not to say. It's just being a professional, getting out there to answer questions and do your job. That's how I see it."

Millsap has learned throughout his 10-year NBA career that sometimes it's wise to just be careful about what you say publicly. It's not just about giving opponents bulletin board material. He knows that in the playoffs each team pays more attention to what the other team says and gameplans can sometimes be exposed through the media.

[RELATED: Wizards vs. Hawks Game 5: How and what to watch]

Dwight Howard has a similar take. He has instructed some of the younger players on the team to stay out of it.

"I'm not a trash talker. A lot of the times I see no need to talk trash. I know a lot of people do it to hype themselves up. Some people just like to talk trash," Howard said. "I just feel like when you win, that's the best way to shut people up. I tell these guys all the time, the way we talk trash is by winning instead of fighting back and forth and getting into a war of words with teams."

The trash talking between teams, though, can be fun for fans and Millsap knows that. He thinks it's actually a good thing at the end of the day, what his comments about MMA and what Morris has said about him since have done to draw attention to the Wizards vs. Hawks first round matchup.

"It does [help]. I think especially to our series. Like, they had us on NBATV a lot. I think it added a little light to our series. It's interesting. As a basketball fan, I know it's good to see that. It makes it more interesting and intriguing. It sucks that I've gotta be in the middle of it. It's not going to escape me, so the better that you embrace it, the better off you are," he said.

Morris and Millsap got into it during Game 1 and it was at the podium afterwards that Millsap said the Wizards "were playing MMA." That set off several days of great quotes from both teams, including Morris' retort that the Wizards were preparing for "double MMA" in Game 2.

Millsap was asked after Tuesday's practice what message he was trying to send with the MMA line. It turns out there were no complexities behind it.

"I said it because I was in a chokehold on the ground. That's why I said it," he said with a laugh.

[RELATED: Mahinmi optimistic he can return by end of Wizards-Hawks series]

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Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey makes huge donation to John Wall's coronavirus charity

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey makes huge donation to John Wall's coronavirus charity

John Wall is getting some major help in reaching his fundraising goal to provide rent assistance to residents of Ward 8 amid the coronavirus, as Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has pledged $200,000 to the cause.

Dorsey, who has the handle @Jack, tweeted his plans Wednesday evening. His donation is two-thirds of Wall's goal to raise $300,000.

It is a very generous donation and also a testament to the work Wall is doing to help others during this time. He picked a cause, used his platform to get the information out there and has caught the attention of someone with the money to help.

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Wall's intention is to help those in the D.C. area who have been affected most by the coronavirus and the toll it has taken on the economy. Wall said residents in need will receive rental assistance for as long as possible and necessary as the country works to eradicate the virus.

For more information, go to the website for Wall's foundation called '202 Assist.'

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Brian Windhorst: 'The vote tomorrow is not going to decide whether or not there is NBA basketball'

Brian Windhorst: 'The vote tomorrow is not going to decide whether or not there is NBA basketball'

According to ESPN's Brian Windhorst, the next news to come out of the NBA world will not be if there's basketball - it will be if it's safe to play basketball.

“We’ve had a very long run of dark days, and this is a good moment. I don’t want to rain on that moment," he told Mike Tirico on NBC Sports' Lunch Talk Live. "The vote of owners tomorrow is not going to decide whether or not there is NBA basketball. I know that’s what it’s going to seem like. What is going to decide NBA basketball is if the virus continues to recede…I’m already sensing that people are forgetting the whole reason it is going on this way, and that is safety.”

While global riots in response to the murder of George Floyd have one-upped the coronavirus pandemic in major news cycles, Florida, where the NBA is reportedly planning to resume play, saw it's largest daily number of new COVID-19 cases since mid-April. 

Another health concern that has risen in return to play conversations is that of physical shape -- not all players have had access to personal basketball courts and training facilities during this time of nationwide quarantine. 

“Everybody that you talk to in the NBA on the training side are worried about these players who went cold turkey or vastly reduced their normal workout loads and haven’t been able to play any five-on-five basketball," Windhorst said.  

"They all have said you have to have time to build back up.”

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After reports with more details on the timeline surfaced, the next order of business will be to figure out how the eight-game schedule, prior to the play-in games/playoffs, would be assorted. Windhorst had a very strong opinion on the proposed idea of teams just finishing out the remainder of their schedule with the 21 teams eligible to play. 

"This schedule is going to be unfair," Windhorst said. "There’s 13 teams in the West playing eight games. Guess what? Not everyone is going to play the same schedule."

"There’s going to be an inherent unfairness and fans and teams are going to complain about it and they’re all going to be right, but they’re all going to have deal with it," he continued. "My expectation is that there will be five or six games per day…I think you could have afternoon playoff basketball."

Possibly the biggest takeaway from Windhort's appearance on Lunch Talk Live was the fact that Thursday's vote should go fairly seamlessly and unanimously. 

“Adam Silver has kept (President of NBAPA Chris Paul and Executive Director of NBAPA Michele Roberts) alongside the entire way here," Windhorst reported.

"Michele Roberts is so confident in the working relationship with Adam Silver that she said she doesn’t even think they’ll take a vote."

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