Jermaine O'Neal will be filing a daily diary with NBA.com during his All-Star stay in Philly. Here's what he had to say about Friday night and trying to wake up Saturday morning.
February 9, 2002
So yesterday after the media session, I had my interviews and portraits with the NBA. Then I got out for a while and went shopping. I went to Torres Big n' Tall and City Groove to get some clothes. I didn't really do too much.
O'Neal laughs with East teammates Baron Davis and Tracy McGrady in the locker room before Saturday's practice.
Jesse Garrabrant/NBAE/Getty Images
I took my family to my agent's dinner last night and then went over to Nike for their party. I was really tired last night. I didn't do too much.
My daughter stayed downstairs with the nanny so I go out and then get some sleep when I got back. I have the nanny here also so they stayed downstairs. I took her mother out too, but my daughter can't go out and party quite yet – she's a couple years away from that.
I have a lot of family and friends in town with me this weekend. I want them to be able to share the experience with me and it's great to have them here. There's probably about 20 total. But I need some time to myself and I'm going to tell them today. I'm going to go see them after practice and I've got to come down and do the dunk contest and then I've got to get some rest.
I was hurting this morning when I had to get up. I got up at 10 to make sure that I had to stretch my ankle out really well -- and to make sure I was awake because I am not a morning person at all.
So I woke up and stretched my ankle and I was going to order room service for breakfast, but I couldn't. They said it was going to take an hour and a half to get me some food because it's so crowded in the hotel. So I went downstairs and got a cinnamon raisin roll, then I got on the bus and came to the arena for practice.
Now we're about to practice together for the first time. It's been pretty cool. I want to really test my ankle. This is the first time I've really been able to get out on the court and run around since I hurt my ankle last Sunday in Washington.
I'm really excited to be out here – I've been through a lot in the last six years so it's finally starting to pay off for me. Now I can't wait to play in the game. I'll check in tomorrow right before it starts.