At a product launch for The Art of Shaving in New York City, Amar’e Stoudemire laughed inside a glowing cage that had been built into a mini basketball court. There the New York Knicks forward schooled a marketing executive on the science of pivoting. It was fitting, not just because a new razor, the Lexington Collection Flexball, features a pivoting technology geared to make for a smoother shave, but because Stoudemire has become somewhat of an expert at pivoting lately.
There’s a lot pivoting that needs to be done when media hurls questions about Phil Jackson and Steve Kerr, the new Golden State Warriors coach that many thought would be the next coach for the New York Knicks. He also learned a ton about pivoting from Hall of Fame center Hakeem Olajuwon, and revamped his game to become a more forceful post presence. He’s averaging 14.5 points and 5.6 rebounds after his All-Star break this past season – and that’s after two knee surgeries sidelined him at the end of last season.
Stoudemire’s post-playing career could see another pivot – this time into personal training. “I’ve thought about it a lot actually,” STAT said. “Going through a lot of injuries, knowing so much about physical recovery and muscle building. I’ve thought about really going into personal training when I’m done playing.”
The six-time NBA All-Star said that nutrition is the key to his fitness and recovery. He’s tried kosher diets and vegan diets and, together with his personal chef Max Hardy, launched a cookbook called Cooking with Amar’e: 100 Easy Recipes for Pros and Rookies in the Kitchen earlier this year.
But the most pressing endeavor in front of Stoudemire and his Knicks is the search for a new head coach. STAT admitted that he wasn’t surprised that it wasn’t Kerr. “It’s kind of a thing with Kerr where he has a great opportunity in San Francisco, his daughter goes to Stanford, he’s from California, great weather year-round, great young team. It’s kind of hard to turn down.”
Stoudemire played under Kerr when the former Chicago Bulls guard served as general manager in Phoenix from 2007 to 2010 and understood it was a tough sell to get Kerr in New York, even with basketball’s most successful coach now at Madison Square Garden.
“For any one of us, if you have a job that’s offering more (money) in your hometown, where your children are growing up, most us would probably take that job as well, so that’s just the nature of the business.”