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The one where Mike Woodson let Zaza Pachulia skip practice for a “hot date”

Oct 26, 2012, 12:25 PM EDT

zaza pachulia Getty Images

Who says Mike Woodson is an old-school, hard-ass coach. You work hard for him, you get some perks.

Woodson, the current Knicks coach, was on “The Game 365” on MSG Network, and the show was such a snoozer that just about everybody tuned out. Everybody but the folks at, and they were rewarded with a great story from when Woodson coached the Hawks.

“When players come to work, you don’t know what to expect,” Woodson said. “Prime example: Zaza Pachulia comes into my office…”

Zaza: Hey coach, can you let me out of practice today?
Woodson: For what?
Zaza: Man, I got a hot date.
Woodson: Are you kidding me? Do you love this girl?
Zaza: Nah coach, I can’t be in love, I’m too young.
Woodson: I take it you aren’t gonna marry this girl then?
Zaza: Nah, coach.

I’m pretty sure even the Zen master Phil Jackson would have unleashed a few swear words on Pachulia at this point. Woodson?

“Yeah, I let him go,” said Woodson, “but only because he worked his butt off for me.”

Raymond Felton, I wouldn’t recommend you try this.

  1. supremekingz - Oct 26, 2012 at 1:25 PM

    I bet Zaza showed coach a picture of the girl, as she was fine enough for him to give Zaza the day off.

    I wanna see this girl!!!

    • money2long - Oct 26, 2012 at 6:44 PM

      woodson let zaza go on account that he gave the female woody’s private cell phone #.
      zaza said: “of course, it ain’t no fun if the homies can’t have none.”

  2. nokoolaidcowboy - Oct 26, 2012 at 4:54 PM

    Good grief.

  3. lavandasie - Oct 26, 2012 at 4:58 PM

    Coach Mike Woodson forgot, that all NBA practices start at morning,
    so I don’t think Zaza had a “hot date” so early:))
    Don’t lie coach !

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