Three-time NBA champion JaVale McGee is one of the most well-known players in the league today. Although he has never necessarily been a star, the 29-year-old’s unique personality and fun habits quickly turned him into a fan favorite and household name.
Recently, McGee posted a video that reminded one and all why he has the reputation that he ultimately has among NBA fans.
In the clip, McGee can be seen throwing a birthday surprise for his longtime housekeeper, Maritza. The video shows him trying to keep the whole thing a secret, while simultaneously plotting on the best way to reward someone who has worked with him for years.
Among the highlights: McGee going shopping, finding just the right cake, and then adding a little bonus on top to make the day truly special.
Beyond doing nice things for the ones he loves, McGee is also facing something of an interesting situation when it comes to his basketball career.
This past offseason, the Los Angeles Lakers moved McGee to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Now he will be asked to pick up some of the slack left behind after the departure of Tristan Thompson to the Boston Celtics.
“[Lakers head coach] Frank [Vogel] actually called me and told me how much they enjoyed having him, how much he enjoyed coaching him and all the great things that he was able to do to help that team every single day,” Cavs coach J.B. Bickerstaff said recently.
“It wasn’t just the game. It was his presence and energy every day. Guys that I trust and respect, that would always tell me the truth, we had those conversations. A lot of people said a lot of good things.”
— Game 7 (@game7__) December 17, 2020
Bickerstaff envisions McGee having a big role in the development of the team’s young players.
“I gave him our expectations. He gave us his expectations and what he was looking for. The transparency and truth helps build trust quickly,” Bickerstaff said. “There’s no questions or doubts, we know exactly what we’re trying to do.”
McGee, for his part, is eager to take on the role Cleveland needs him to take.
When confronted about Tim Duncan’s sexuality, Danny Green kept it real. https://t.co/A2W9DCA1p3
— Game 7 (@game7__) December 18, 2020
“I definitely accept that role,” McGee he said.
“Coming in here, trying to every day bring the energy for the guys and just be a great example of a hard working vet. Just trying to make sure these guys know what it takes to be great and be a real professional. Trying to influence the young guys to be on time and follow all the rules that coach establishes. It’s just about a culture, making a winning culture, and winning games. That’s the most important part. When you win games, everybody’s happy. When you lose, there’s always a problem.”
McGee is expected to make his Cavaliers debut on Friday night when the team squares off against the New York Knicks.