Now that his two-game suspension is over, swingman Stephen Jackson said he's ready to rejoin the Warriors and return to his role as arguably the team's best all-around player.
But, by no means, should that be deemed as happiness.
"I've got no choice but to go out there," Jackson said in a phone interview Monday. "I'm just going to do my job. I don't want to be fake. I'm just going to go and play basketball and handle my business."
Team president Robert Rowell couldn't be reached for comment. General manager Larry Riley declined to speak on the matter aside from what the team released in Saturday's suspension announcement. But he and coach Don Nelson are scheduled to meet with Jackson before today's practice.
The three are expected to converse about how to move forward, especially considering a trade involving Jackson is unlikely.
Jackson said he'll still be the guy who averaged 20.7 points, 6.5 assists and 5.1 rebounds per game last season when he hits the court. But clearly, his feelings about playing for the Warriors haven't changed.
"If something happens, then it happens," Jackson said. "But I'm just going to play, just do what I do."
He elaborated on the episode that led to the two-game ban. It began in Friday's game against the Los Angeles Lakers at the Forum. Jackson and the Lakers' Kobe Bryant were locked up against each other in the first quarter. The competition became testy and Jackson picked up five fouls and a technical foul in the quarter.
Jackson voiced his anger at the coaching staff when he was taken out of the game at the 2:50 mark of the quarter. Nelson eventually sent him to the locker room to cool off. Jackson never returned.
Jackson said he was upset because the coaches left him in the game despite his foul trouble, and they didn't stick up for him with the replacement referees.
"I felt like I didn't get handled right in the game," Jackson said. "I know I did what I'm supposed to do being a man. I'm not going to let Kobe throw elbows at me.
"(Things are) always made out to make me look bad. At the end of the day, I wouldn't disrespect Coach like that. But I was mad at our staff for not having my back. If I'm going to go out there and bust my (butt) for you, I expect you to have my back."
Jackson said he didn't think the two-game suspension was fair — it cost him $139,000, as preseason games are figured into player salaries — but he is ready to move on. He was spotted after Friday's game in Los Angeles with his wife, smiling and holding guard Monta Ellis' infant son. Monday, he and his wife made a trip to the Oakland Zoo.
Jackson reiterated that all of his frustrations stem from his desire to win, and his hope that the organization wants to win as much as he does.
"My whole thing is I want to win," Jackson said. "They should be able to respect that. I want to win. That's just me. I'm still going to go out there and play hard and do what I do. But I want to win."
Note: Rasual Butler scored 13 of his 27 points in the third quarter, and the Los Angeles Clippers erased a 20-point deficit to beat the visiting Warriors 124-117 on Monday night. Baron Davis, who helped the Warriors end a 12-year playoff drought during the 2006-07 season before joining L.A. as a free agent in July 2008, added 13 points and 11 assists. Anthony Morrow, playing all 48 minutes, led the Warriors with 32 points. Ellis added 24 points and seven assists.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.