Wednesday, December 5, 2007

AJ making two visits to SA this month

Avery Johnson’s visit to the AT&T Center tonight is all business. In 17 days, it’ll be completely personal. The Little General’s No. 6 will officially be the sixth retired number by the Spurs on Dec. 22.

Johnson joins Spurs legends Johnny Moore (00), James Silas (13), Sean Elliott (32), George Gervin (44) and David Robinson (50). The obligatory question for Johnson this morning: Have you thought about your number hanging from the rafters?

Obligatory answer: “Haven’t even thought about it. Only thinking about tonight’s game.”

Johnson, of course, had more to say. The ceremony will be before the Spurs-Clippers game. Johnson requested that the retirement not take place before a Mavs game. Instead of an awkward situation of honoring a coach who’s trying to beat their team, the Spurs are celebrating the career of one of the most popular players in franchise history.

“It’s going to be a great time for my family,” he said. “Everybody’s called in trying to get tickets for the game and trying to be part of the ceremony. It will be pretty special, but tonight it’s hard to think about it right now because we’re so focused on the game plan and getting our team ready.”

Johnson was asked about his jersey hanging next to Robinson, a close friend who he famously used to call “5-0.”

“You know what,” Johnson said, “it’ll be nice to be anywhere in the building. They could put it in the bathroom, I don’t care. It’ll be a thrill. Anytime something like that happens, you’ve had a lot of coaches, individuals, family and friends that help you get to that point. It will be special not just for me, but for all of my friends.”

And his many fans.

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