Stephen Jackson was a well-respected player during his time in the NBA, playing for several teams in the league and eventually winning a championship. He spent 13 years in the league and his role often changed depending on the team he played for and in later stages of his career, he accepted the role of a bench player capable of providing solid minutes on both ends of the floor.
Jackson’s experience was also beneficial for teams that had several young players on their roster because having a strong presence in the locker room helps the team grow and be better in several segments of the game. In a recent interview, Jackson came out and said how teams nowadays are no longer interested in having veterans on their rosters simply because they hold younger players accountable. He believes teams are in some way disrespecting the older players who have the true love of the game and would do anything to get better and help their team win more ball games.
He is also confident he would still be able to provide solid minutes in the league today but says teams are no longer looking for players of his caliber who are not afraid to challenge younger teammates to perform better on a daily basis.
“I got 15-20 minutes in the NBA easy. I think more teams are worried about me pushing their guys to be better and harder because they don’t do that now. If I am on the team now and you have a guy that is in the league for 3 years now and he doesn’t want to work and doesn’t care about getting better or the team I am going to say something to him. We only win if we all buy into the same situation. Guys don’t hold guys accountable anymore in the NBA and that is why I think they are pushing out all the vets because we hold guys accountable and we really love the game. Most of the players today are focused on what the game can do for them and they don’t even love it. We love the game because we came from nothing. We played basketball on concrete and we didn’t hire 30 thousand dollars trainers to teach us basketball. We just had to go to the park and play. The love is different and I think they are trying to push us guys away.”