Ivica Zubac On ‘Podcast P With Paul George’

Ivica Zubac On ‘Podcast P With Paul George’

Paul George shares his POV on being dunked on by LeBron James plus Ivica Zubac talks about growing his game with James Harden on “Podcast P with Paul George”.

Today, we share this week’s episode of “Podcast P with Paul George”, presented by Wave Sports + Entertainment, where PG and the guys are joined by Clippers’ starting center, Ivica Zubac.

In the episode, Zu talks about his time with the Clippers and improved performance this season, as well as getting the opportunity to grow his game with James Harden and the extended training sessions he and the other Clippers’ big men have been holding with James after every Clippers practice.

Later in the episode, PG shares his POV on LeBron James’ viral dunk on him and reflects on entering the top 100 all-time scoring list, acknowledging that he never envisioned achieving such a milestone, especially considering the challenges posed by injuries throughout his career.

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS

  • 33:21 – ZU ON HIS GOALS FOR THE 2023-2024 SEASON

PG:So Zu, this is, I think, your best season, right? Just efficient at the rim. You’re finishing anchoring our defense, protecting the rim. And the chemistry between you, Russ, James, has been off the chart coming into the season. What was, like, your main goal of improvement or give us the keys to your success to start this year off.”

Zu:I feel like it started end of last year. I had some good games, and I was like, okay, I’m close. I can do this on a regular basis. I got to have a good summer. I had a really good summer. Working out, worked out a lot on my body, a lot of my game, finishing with both hands. [The] Clippers wanted me to add some finishes in the post over my right shoulder because they thought I’m going too much to my right hook. And just kind of being more aggressive to score and all that. And I had a really good summer and had a great tournament with a national team. And I was in a good shape to start he season so that was it basically, mentality, just having confidence in my game. Seeing, okay, I can do this, let me have a good summer of work so I can do this on a nightly basis.”

  • 36:53 – ZU ON AFTER-PRACTICE PRACTICE AND BUILDING CHEMISTRY WITH JAMES HARDEN

PG:I think what a lot of people don’t realize is how much the chemistry between you and James [has] gotten so much better. You guys work after practice, like 20, 30 minutes. What are we calling that? James Harden’s training camp?

Zu:It started like first he was like ‘stay a little longer, let’s work on our pick and roll stuff.’…So he just got to the team, he’s trying to get to know guys, what they [are] like and everything. So I thought it was going to be for a few days and, you know. Now after every shoot around, after every practice we stay we’re staying 20-minutes at least working on pick & roll from six different spots. [One time] I told James ‘I can’t do it, I’m tired’ and then I had a bad game and he’s [James Harden] is like ‘everytime we do it you get 15 points, so what you wanna do?’ So now I’m not skipping it anymore.”

  • 46:09 – ZU AND PG “DON’T UNDERSTAND” RUSS’ ENERGY

Zu:I don’t understand it. He’s 16 years in. Even before we warm up in a practice, the dude is jumping head to the rim. I don’t understand it. We come in, I’m 26, I can’t move. I got venom around my back. My knees are hurting. I’m like, [I] can’t move until I warm up. And this dude, we don’t even warm up. He’s dunking. His energy is crazy. He’s running around yelling, talking to everyone, talking shit crazy. I don’t know.”

PG:And I told y’all this when I got to Oklahoma. I thought it was some shit he’s taken. I’m thinking he’s heavy on [the] Red Bulls. It’s something he’s doing every game. This can’t just be the norm. But like Zu said, as much shit. He talks towards the opponents, he’s doing that with the development, like our player development team. He’s doing it with our scout team. It’s smoke for everybody. Anybody can get it…I’ve never heard Russ been like – there’s days where I’m like, my knee is a little sore today, a little stiff – I’ve never heard Russ talk about an injury. Nothing hurts.”

  • 1:07:49 – PG ON ENTERING THE TOP 100 ALL-TIME SCORING LIST

Dallas:And we do need to make a special shout out to the one and only Paul George, who is now the 100th leading scorer in NBA history…Did a young PG ever imagine that?

PG:No. You know what’s crazy? I would look up like, damn, Kobe scored 30,000. Like Malone, like Kareem, these dudes scored 30,000. I always will look that stuff up. And then my first couple of years in the league, I would be tracking like damn I’m never going to reach these numbers. But to now end up being top 100, and that’s a long shot away. Yeah, [with] the injuries, like 14 seasons I played. But realistically, ten seasons, nine seasons I played fully. So to again be where I’m at and to overcome the injuries and still have the longevity to still be playing through 14 years up until this point. Yeah, I definitely appreciative of cracking that list, but it’s a lot of bucket getters on that list.”

  • 1:10:36 – THE GUYS DISCUSS PG GETTING DUNKED ON BY LEBRON

Jackie:How did you feel getting dunked on by LeBron James? Because everybody said you got dunked on.”

PG:Well, you know that old saying, what starts fucked up usually ends fucked up. So, bro, that play, I’m like, I got the ball, right? And we’re going in transition. And I see T-Mann, bro, T-Mann looks wide open out of nowhere I think D’Angelo comes and takes the pass away. From T-Mann because I’m looking to throw the ball ahead to kick it to T-Mann for a wide open corner three. Soon as I get ready to throw it, boom, D’Angelo just comes out of nowhere and takes that pass away. So now I’m like, caught, like fuck, where do I go next? Well, throw it up to the biggest motherfucker on the floor. Like, Zu help! And it was close, almost got it over. That play almost never happened.”

Jackie:You know what was a great thing about it, though? I was so glad you didn’t jump.”

PG:Yeah, no fuck that…So after I throw it to Zu or tried to get it over top to Zu, I think AD deflected it, right? AD deflects it, LeBron gets it. So it’s already– I fucked the play up. Like, damn. So then…[LeBron] is going full speed down the court. So I see a guy to my left, I’m like, all right, let me try to cat and mouse this a little bit… Usually Bron gives it up to get it back, right? So I see he’s not giving it, like, next. My next train of thought is like, all right, let me try to pick him up a little earlier. But at the same time, it’s like, all right, I got to get ready to absorb the contact, too. So I’m trying to back up a little bit at the same time. I don’t know, bro. It was just like a deer in the headlights. I don’t know what to do right here. Before I could think about the next thing to do, I was just stuck.”

Zu:He took off from far. Yeah, and he was there, but I don’t think it was that bad. You kind of got out of the way. He hit you. You got out of the way. You didn’t [fall].”