SAN ANTONIO – DeMar DeRozan has been embraced by Spurs fans and is adjusting to life in the Alamo City, but the story behind his trade to San Antonio remains a sensitive topic of conversation for the all-star guard.
In a recent interview, DeRozan told Jonathan Abrams of Bleacher Report that he learned he was traded while sitting in the parking lot of a Jack in the Box in his hometown of Los Angeles.
DeRozan said he had just finished watching a movie and went to grab a quick bite, but noticed he had several missed calls.
He checked his phone, found out he was traded and sat in the parking lot to process what happened.
"It just caught me off guard," DeRozan told Abrams. "I sat in the Jack in the Box parking lot for, like, two hours just trying to process it all, like just trying to process the whole thing, and it just tripped me out honestly, just trying to figure it out. But that's how I found out. Midnight, sitting in the Jack in the Box parking lot for about two hours till I went home."
DeRozan had spent his entire career in Toronto and was an ambassador for the franchise and the city.
DeRozan has admitted he never wanted to be traded but has felt immense support from Spurs fans and the franchise.
The shock from the trade has subsided and DeRozan has fit in accordingly. He’s the Spurs' leading scorer through 12 games at 25 points per game and leads the team in assists with 6.6 per game.
“As long as I got my legs, as long as I'm physically here, I'm going to work," DeRozan told Abrams. "You can't take that from me."
DeRozan said he will work hard to make sure the Spurs remain one of the preeminent franchises in the NBA.
When asked what type of player the Spurs were getting this season, DeRozan answered on media day, “a passionate, hungry, dedicated player at the highest level."
He added he is "a guy who thrives in every situation I've ever been put in."
The Spurs are counting on that hunger to lead them back to the playoffs.