Shannon Brown officially signed a two-season, $4.6-million contract with the Lakers today. Here are the highlights of his press conference in El Segundo:
Question: What led you to come back?
Brown: “All the rumors out there about everybody offering me $4 or $5 million and all of that, that’s not true. This is just the best situation for what was going on, a chance to win three NBA championships, in a great city to live in. Everything just felt right.”
Q: Did the stories bother you?
Brown: “It didn’t bother me at all. People will say anything to make a story. It didn’t bother me at all. It might have bothered the people who wanted me to come back, but I understood what was going on.”
Q: Have the moves this offseason made them better, particularly the bench?
Brown: “No doubt. That’s a major part of winning. Our bench has to come out and produce and make the team better when the starters are on the bench. I think we made the correct steps to winning another championship.”
Q: Did you and Kobe talk over the summer? What did he tell you?
Brown: “He definitely told me if I was to come back I was going to have a major role helping the bench. Helping the team was a major thing. … I noticed Kobe likes to bring in guys he got into it with, who have that same feistiness. … He really doesn’t have to say much more than that. He’s continuing to get better.”
Q: What have you been working on this summer?
Brown: “Everything. I’ve been working a lot more on skills. A lot of skill work. Obviously, everybody knows I can run and jump and all of that stuff. Now it’s more about skills and being able to solidify myself as a basketball player instead of an athlete.”
Q: Can you talk about being in this position and having options?
Brown: “This has been the best fit, the best spot, the best everything for me. I sat down and evaluated all the situations, from the money to the teams and my potential role, and this has been No. 1 on the list.”
Q: Did you see a hand specialist (about your injured right thumb)?
Brown: “Just as expected, everything is fine. I’ve worked out with it. I’m able to dribble and catch and shoot the ball and all of that stuff. The doc said somebody put in the paper that I might need surgery and I guess that was recent. That’s not true. I might have said that when it first happened, and that was a possibility, but that’s gone out the window now. It’s healed up pretty well.”
Q: How more difficult will it be to win again?
Brown: “They still have to come through us. To do it two times in a row is difficult. I know the third is going to be tougher. We have guys on the team that have done it already, coaches that have done it already. We have a lot of things to look back to, to build on for this season. I think everybody is looking forward to the challenge. We made some trades and brought some people in to help us to do that.”
Q: How important was being a part of history, part of a three-peat?
Brown: “It’s pretty special. It’s a lot of guys who came through this NBA, some lasted, some didn’t. Some played 15 years and can’t say they even made it to the Finals. The possibility of winning three NBA championships is something that will go down in history.”