- He's admitted to taking a "Number 2" in teammate Andray Blatche's shoes.
- He yells, "Hibachi" after taking a shot.
- He has a $100 million contract, yet drives a 1997 Chrysler Sebring daily.
- On faking the injury: "I told Nick Young I'd sacrifice playing tonight so he can get some time in, because I know he's kind of frustrated he's not getting a chance to crack the three position."
- He played online poker during halftime of games.
- He reportedly showered in full uniform and shoes at halftime of a game against the San Antonio Spurs. He scored 24 points in the second half.
My hope is that we'll see a return to these sorts of stories, and more. Arenas is still young enough (28) to have some of his best play ahead of him. Even though Stan Van Gundy has promised Jameer Nelson the starting point guard spot (making Arenas the NBA's highest paid sixth man), Arenas will have on-court minutes with Dwight Howard; the first time in his career he will have ever played with an all-star big man.
Howard, who is also known for being an on-court comedian, may remind Arenas what playing in the NBA was like before things got all serious.
If so, the redemption stories should start up around March/April. If the Magic make it to the semis, or even the Eastern Conference Finals, it will have to do with in large part whatever contribution Arenas has yet to make. Many have made the comparisons to Michael Vick's NFL resurgence, but I liken this more to Ron Artest's NBA version. An eccentric personality engages in some horrific behavior, takes mandated time off, hooks up with a winning team, plays well, and reminds the general public why they liked him in the first place.
A familiar story, but a welcome one.