Essential line: "Oh, mama, everybody talks, everybody talks, everybody talks...too much."
Rudy Gay has been a significant topic of conversation this offseason. First came the warranted discussion of his missed last-second shots in the series against the Clippers.
Next came the trade rumors, which had at least four teams vying for a chance to swing a deal for the swingman, according to Hoops World. Those were quashed by Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley, who told The Commercial Appeal that the organization wasn't looking to trade Gay.
Through the rest of the offseason, the two running themes surrounding the six-year veteran were his ability to play with Zach Randolph and his desire to be a big-time playmaker.
The first is based on the fact that each one missed a significant part of a season in the last two years and the idea that both are high-scoring players who like being stars. This construct foolishly assumes that the Grizzlies' scoring line can always be upheld with just one of these two players leading scoring for the low-scoring team.
Zach Lowe of Sports Illustrated pointed out in March that during the 2011 conference semifinals, Thunder defenders abandoned the perimeter to swarm on Randolph and Marc Gasol with no Gay out there.
The second has been a knock on Gay since he was at the University of Connecticut. However, as time has worn on, the stigma has worn off. Gay has become more assertive every year. Last season, he put the team on his shoulders and carried them to the playoffs while leading the team in shots per game by more than five.
Gay surely knows that, as the song conveys, everybody talks. Trade rumors are the low-hanging fruit of sports talk. Also, people like to fantasize about drama between stars, even if it doesn't exist.
Fans would hardly be able to live vicariously through players as they like to do if they couldn't wonder whether a player would play up to his ability.
Gay will try to shake off the talk and be the playmaker he's capable of being. Hopefully, he'll score 25 points more often, but even if he doesn't, the Grizz still have a spectacular playmaker.