Saturday, August 22, 2009


Collison defends tweets


Former Kansas University basketball standout Nick Collison is embroiled in a silly, head-scratching controversy in Oklahoma City — home of Collison’s Oklahoma City Thunder NBA team.

OKC “Sports Animal” radio talk show host Jim Traber recently took exception to a handful of Collison’s “tweets” on the Internet Web site Twitter.

In 140 characters or less, Nick the past month or so has commented on how hot the weather is in Oklahoma City ... and how cool it is in Seattle.

Power forward Collison played for the Seattle SuperSonics for five seasons before the team moved to Red Clay Country last year. He still lives in Seattle in the offseason with his wife, Robbie, and daughter, Emma.

Anyhow ... former Baltimore Orioles first baseman Traber of station WWLS last week admitted he has been trying to run Collison out of town because of his “tweets,” which were first brought to light by Daily Oklahoman columnist Jenny Carlson.

Collison — who happens to be one of the nicest, nonconfrontational guys you’d ever want to meet — made an unsolicited call to the Oklahoma talk show last week.

He engaged in a remarkable 17-minute give-and-take with Traber which is available on the station’s Web site or at

Collison told Traber he thoroughly enjoyed his first season in Oklahoma City and said the fans were the best in the league. He said his positive comments about Seattle had nothing to do with OKC.

“I never said anything bad about Oklahoma City,” Collison told Traber. “I said it was 105 degrees, that it was too hot. If people in Oklahoma City are mad at me for saying 105 degrees is too hot, that’s fine.

“I grew up in Iowa,” the Iowa Falls native added. “I detassled corn and hated it when it was hot. I sweat a lot. I’m the sweatiest dude in the league and I don’t like it hot. That’s all I said about Oklahoma City.”

A somewhat combative Traber reminded Collison that at the time of the sale and move of the SuperSonics, Nick said he didn’t want the team to leave the great Northwest.

“Seattle had a team for 41 years. I didn’t feel I should turn my back on all those fans,” Collison said. “We could have moved to my hometown of Iowa Falls and I’d have said I was not excited about the Sonics leaving Seattle. It had nothing to do with where we were going.

“I enjoy my time in Oklahoma City. I loved playing there last year. I was so impressed people came out to the games despite how badly we started. My daughter goes to a great preschool that we were happy to get in.

“I am excited to come back. I think we’ve got an exciting young team. I’ve been working hard on my game to try to contribute to that team.”

Traber never completely backed down, but graciously thanked Collison for his willingness to phone in and discuss the matter.

Collison said the flap wouldn’t affect his “tweeting” in the future.

“Twitter to me is something I just have fun with,” Collison said. “I’m not trying to send any messages to anybody about anything. It’s pretty dumb actually. I just have a good time with it.”

The bottom line? Whoever said talk about the weather is boring is crazy.


lama 13 years, 1 month ago

Traber is an idiot...all he talks about is food. A complete disaster as a baseball color man (fired) and now in second-rate city OKC.

Robert Brock 13 years, 1 month ago

Moving from a great city like Seattle to a completely ignorant city like OKC is rough.

Seth Peattie 13 years, 1 month ago

Traber? Never heard of him. He can suck it and so can OKC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

waywardJay 13 years, 1 month ago

Jenny Carlson AGAIN. The woman is crazy. She's the one responsible for "i'm a MAN. I'm 40." She also was talking serious smack about Oklahoma beating us at home and then said the difference was griffin.

Wasn't she former KU ?

mikehawk 13 years, 1 month ago

New and sports, its about creating controversy to obtain ratings....and we are fools enough to listen...or blog. They can only talk so much about OU football and they need something down here for a little filler time. "Oh, here is somthing that get the nuts stirred up. We can't run down health care reform on a sports show so let's trash a quality lunch pail-type player on the Thunder." Not much else to discuss about our "pro" team.

buckleyhawk 13 years, 1 month ago

According to this (and assuming it's the same Jenni Carlson), yes, she is/was a J-Hawk...

Martin Shupert 13 years, 1 month ago

I LOVE Lawrence, but geez... 105 and it sometimes gets up there that far here, is too fricking hot, no matter where you are. Oklahoma, fun in the sun! What idiot thinks we would want to sell people on the idea that 105 makes this area a great place to live? Come to Iowa when it's 105 and detassle corn... you'll love it. I don't think that's their state motto either. Incredible how people can pick up on some comment like that and try to go after someone for having a little common sense. I can see the new approach though: Come to California. Yeah, the weather is good, but wait until you've survived an earthquake! They're the greatest.

LAJayhawk 13 years, 1 month ago

"Collison — who happens to be one of the nicest, nonconfrontational guys you’d ever want to meet..."

While this is a bit more editorial than you usually get, Gary, it is right on the money. Collison and Hinrich were two of the nicest and most humble guys I ever dealt with during my time in Lawrence. This is really a ludicrous situation and doesn't deserve any attention. mikehawk is completely correct in that Traber is clearly looking for controversy to increase ratings.

And he has picked an absolutely idiotic way to do it.

jayhawkboogeyman 13 years, 1 month ago

Collison has no obligation to OKC anyway. He just happens to work for a company based in OKC for part of the year. Who cares what he thinks about the town; his job is to play basketball, not be a tour guide or state tourism ambassador. I am sure there are thousands of people in OKC who feel the same way about the weather there as Nick. This whole thing is ridiculous. I would hardly call this a controversy. Nick made an innocuous statement and some blowhog tried to make a big deal out of nothing.

ku_foaf 13 years, 1 month ago

Collison is probably going to keep it up if it helps get him the heck out of Oklahoma ... OKC, Seattle ... plains & fields, giant trees and mountains, 500 miles to an ocean, the ocean is right there, decisions, decisions ... I would be cussing up a storm if I had to move from Seattle to OKC. Sorry.

Collision is probably just like me. He grew up in the Midwest and was ready to see somewhere else. I would live in my home area around KC, but shudder at the thought of OKC, Omaha, Peoria, Des Moines, etc ... He totally has my sympathy.

KGphoto 13 years, 1 month ago

I guess I don't understand how Carlson is crazy. She's and award winning journalist from KU. She said in this article that she likes Collison even more because he is funny on Twitter. And he is.

And, by the way, she was absolutely correct about Reid. But all anyone ever focused on was Gundy's infant tantrum. She was able to pinpoint the problem that Gundy had been cloaking. The very fact that he blew up is proof that she was right. And it probably stung a little more cuz it was a girl that outed Reid. And a little easier for him to berate a girl too. Woodling spotted this as a possibility, and I think it's true. He went after the girl.

As far as Traber goes. Hell he's just a failure. He's desperate for attention. As you can see on his short but sweet wiki page. His immediate family has enjoyed tremendous success across a spectrum of professions. And he is most famous for being named to the list of all-time worst Orioles ever. And for falling on his face while chasing a Japanese pitcher. Oh yes, that's exactly how you find yourself in OKC stirring cud for attention.

And this. OMG! Hardy, har har. What a tool.

I wonder if he envisions chasing Nick around a basketball court.

Chicago_JHawk 13 years, 1 month ago

Just listened to the radio segment. Wow! Nick totally undresses the guy who refuses to admit he was wrong. Trying to stir up some controversy...

Scott Smetana 13 years, 1 month ago

Jenny Carlson...AGAIN!! Amazing her name keeps coming up. Yes, she's a KU grad. She made a living while at KU writing negative stories against Jayhawk athletes for the UDK. Looks like she's keeping it up!

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