Duke’s Seth Curry created a mini-firestorm in the Triangle over the weekend when he gave Shawn Krest, who covers the Blue Devils, some quotes that seemed to take a shot at Austin Rivers. Per Krest’s twitter feed:
Seth Curry on difference between this year’s Duke team & last year’s: “we like each other”. I asked him to clarify & he said it wasn’t that last year’s guys hated each other “but we weren’t close like this”
Curry also said that the lack of off-court closeness affected their on-court cohesiveness, according to Steve Wiseman.
It’s easy to take those tweets and assume that Curry was taking a shot at former Blue Devil Austin Rivers. Rivers was a shoot-first guard that averaged more turnovers than assists, and his cockiness and bravado have been well-known characteristics of the new New Orleans Hornet since he was a sophomore in high school.
But reading between the lines doesn’t always give you the full-story.
For starters, chemistry was an issue with that Duke team all season long, and Rivers may not have been the only culprit. Remember, he’s not the only highly-regarded freshman that left the program. Michael Gbinje transferred to Syracuse after spending the majority of the season riding the pine. I’m sure that didn’t work wonders for Duke’s chemistry.
It is also worthwhile to listen to the entire interview. Curry’s full answer to the original question:
The biggest thing is just trying to be more of a family. Get to know each other off the court. This summer we’ve been hanging out a lot more, getting to know each other. It seems like everybody likes each other this year, so it should be a fun year.
Sounds different when you read it that way, doesn’t it?
Sounds a lot more like he’s saying “We’re all really good friends this year” than “We hated each other last year”, right?
Austin Rivers may not have been a perfect fit for Duke last season, but I don’t think we caught Curry throwing him under the bus.