48 Hours With Al Thornton, aka Superman
“He’s just Superman, jumps over cars I guess.”
-Flip Saunders on Al Thornton
I was minding my own business last Thursday evening when I noticed a tweet from Wizards forward Al Thornton:
“This may sound crazy but I just literally got hit by a car walking.. Wtf.”
My initial thought was that Thornton was just letting off steam before or after practice, or maybe he was joking around with someone else on Twitter. But not even 10 minutes later, he followed up with a few more details:
“Well. I would but I cnt explain too much on twitter. Plain and simple I got hit by a car while walking up a hill.”
At that point, I was pretty much convinced Thornton really did get in an accident, but the very fact that he was on Twitter meant it wasn’t serious. Still, pretty shocking to see that type of news revealed in such a manner. I remember saying to myself, “I cannot wait until Saturday’s practice, so I can get the details.”
Then, on Saturday when I arrived at the Patriot Center on the campus of George Mason University, I noticed the Wizards were practicing in the dark. One of the Patriot Center employees informed me that the power had been out for awhile, and that it was scheduled to come back on in 15-20 minutes. It never happened. Finally a decision was made to cut practice short, and before the media could sit in and watch the Wizards in action. All the players were dismissed except John Wall, Kevin Palmer and Mr. Al Thornton. And of course, five minutes later the power was restored.
Under running lights, Thornton stayed on the court, working on his game. He shot a series of three- pointers, and numerous jumpers from just inside the three point line. He worked on shooting off the dribble, and even went down in the post a few times. This went on for nearly 45 minutes. By the time he was done, only the impatient media and a few members of the Wizards staff remained.
After his workout, Thornton discussed the accident, practicing in the dark, and what he did over the summer to stay slim and trim.
Other notes from Saturday’s training camp, courtesy of Flip Saunders:
- Gilbert Arenas “tweaked his ankle” and did not practice Saturday, but he is scheduled to practice on Sunday.
- Blatche is participating in all the drills with no restrictions, and getting his body back in shape.
- The Wizards were seemingly able to concentrate and practice better once the power went out. “I guess you could say we shot the lights out … actually we all shot pretty well, we shot better without the lights than we did with them,” Saunders joked.
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Talking About Practice