Chauncey Billups has been a team player during every stop of his NBA career, but that appears to be over following Saturday's official announcement that he's been waived by the New York Knicks as they used their new amnesty provision. Billups followed up on some pointed comments earlier in the week with even more comments that indicate he's apparently ready to take on a different role in the league.
In an apparent effort to make sure teams don't claim him off of waivers, thereby taking away the possibility of picking his new team on his own, Billups went on the record with Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski on Saturday afternoon.
"I'm tired of being the good guy," Billups told Yahoo! Sports by phone on Saturday afternoon. "I'm tired of being viewed as the guy. After a while, you just kind of get taken advantage of in these situations. I've been known as a leader, and I am a leader, but a leader can be as disruptive as he can be productive, especially when you carry a strong voice and people rally around you. This is about me now. This is about me, and teams should know that right now."
The amnesty provision allows teams under the salary cap to submit bids and claim players released by other teams. Billups obviously doesn't want that, however, as he'd rather go somewhere to win.
"I want my freedom. My goal is to control my own destiny. And as you've seen in my career, I've never been in a position to do that. I know some teams out there are saying, ‘Oh, Chauncey will be great in mentoring' and I'm tired of that. I've got a few good years left to play, and I'm not trying to come in and sit on the bench, or be a mentor. I'm not going to be that guy. I want to go somewhere and win. I want to choose."
Considering the veteran point guard is getting over fourteen million dollars to not play for the Knicks this season, one might think he wouldn't be in such a bad mood. It remains to be seen if teams will take heed of the veteran's apparent heel turn and allow him to choose his next team, but that process should be interesting as well.