Sports Illustrated has an article on Andrei Kirilenko that will run tomorrow today both in print and online. Once I have the link, I'll get it up. in the meantime, here are some excerpts,
On his relationship with Sloan,
"It's not that I don't like Jerry," says Andrei. "He's a good person. He's just from an older generation that treats players like kids. Let's say your boss comes to you and says, 'Hey, son. Come here'. And you look at him like, What did you call me? It doesn't hurt your feelings, but it doesn't feel comfortable."
On his breakdown in the 2007 playoffs,
Rock bottom came during the first round of the playoffs. After sitting on the bench for the final 17 minutes of Utah's Game 1 loss to the Rockets, Kirilenko began sobbing as he talked to the press at practice the next day. "I have no confidence," he told reporters. "None." A horrified Masha could barely watch. The following morning she flew to Houston and found her husband alone in his hotel room, inconsolable. "The thing that you have to realize about Andrei," says Masha, "is that he is impossible to get upset. I can't do it. So when I saw him like that, I knew something was seriously wrong."
And you can tell who wears the pants,
Relaxing at the Kirilenkos' spacious, modern Salt Lake City home, Masha's eyes grow wide when told that Sloan didn't care whether his players liked him.
"Does he care whether their wives like him?" she says.
Andrei turns and mutters something to her in Russian.
"He doesn't like me to talk about that," says Masha.
A lot of it we've already heard and some of it we've heard over and over again. But there's good stuff in there. My favorite part is the last paragraph,
For now, life is a sweet dream. Really. Sure, he's a little more jaded-"It's hard to totally forget all the stuff that happened," he says-but he's usually wearing the grin that Masha fell in love with nine years ago. "I've seen Andrei happier two times," says Masha. "When he made the All-Star team and on our honeymoon. He just wants to help his team. That's the only thing that matters to him."
I'd like to ask him why his honeymoon was one of his favorite times.