WASHINGTON, D.C. - Andray Blatche hears you booing him, and he's taking less shots because of it.
Blatche received a smattering of boos when he came off the bench on Monday in his return from a shoulder injury. But he said Wednesday, in his return to the starting lineup, was the worst he's ever heard it.
"Intro? I was like, 'Oh man,'" he said. "But hey man, we won. So if they want to do that and we win, I don't care."
OK. Except that he kind of sounds like he does care.
"It was just in my head," Blatche said. "Roger [Mason], he had my back. He tried to get 'em out my head and keep me focused and that's what teammates are for. You know, they picked me up and kept me going."
After the game, head coach Flip Saunders said he had to encourage Blatche not to pass up open shots. But the forward must have heard the groans from the crowd whenever he began an offensive move toward the basket because he turned down several opportunities where in the past he might have hoisted a shot.
Blatche was aggressive as a primary scoring option when he spent a few games earlier this season coming off the bench, so I asked him if his mindset has changed since being re-inserted into the starting lineup.
"It's tough taking some open shots when, whenever I take some and I miss and then the boos come out," he admitted. "It slims down your shot selection. So I don't know, it's just tough."