Dwight Howard and James Harden are under heavy criticism for the latest information about their leadership, or lack of.
Update: Motiejunas said that he was misquoted. The actual transcript shows that he said that the stars eat different food than he does, and that he and they eat separately but not necessarily them and the team.
The two stars received criticism after dismissing the importance of departed players Chandler Parsons, Jeremy Lin, and Omer Asik earlier in the offseason.
“It won’t affect us at all,” Howard told AP, referring to Parsons. “We have myself and James. We have the best center and the best two guard in the game on the same team. It’s on us.”
“Dwight and I are the cornerstones of the Rockets,” Harden added to The Philippine Star, referring to all three departures.
“The rest of the guys are role players or pieces that complete our team. We’ve lost some pieces and added some pieces. I think we’ll be fine next season.”
Now Donatas Motiejunas has spoken out about Howard and Harden.
“Hi & bye. They even eat separately from the team. Usually in some fast food place,” he said, reported Lithuanian journalist Simonas Baranauskas.
Motiejunas noted that he called Lin after he was traded, and talked. I got along best with Jeremy Lin. He was really supportive when I was in the D-League. Kept in touch, asked how I was doing,” he said.
“He’s a really nice person to be around.”
Grantland’s Zach Lowe said earlier this offseason that the culture in the Rockets might be why Chris Bosh didn’t join the team.
“He was intrigued by Houston, but he’s 30, he’s super-smart, and he just spent four years playing with two like-minded stars on an older roster for an organization that takes basketball craft seriously,” he wrote.
“The Rockets do, too, but there is an undercurrent around the league that Harden and Howard don’t represent the most appealing duo of teammates for any star who has lived within ultraserious professionalism. Howard was great last year, but the jokiness and free-agent dithering hurt his image. The viral videos of Harden’s defense damaged his reputation. It wouldn’t shock me if Bosh at least considered some of that in his decision.”