Cam Newton spoke about his playing career in a conversation with Chris Paul on Monday in an Instagram Live session. Newton was released on March 24 by the Carolina Panthers, a team he played for nine seasons. He’s now a free agent.
The NFL quarterback talked to the Oklahoma City Thunder point guard about self-quarantining during the discussion as well, which he called “weird.” Mainly because he has so much time for himself. Plus Newton still doesn’t know what team he’ll play for, which only adds to that strange feeling.
Newton also said he still has something to prove in the NFL after being let go by the Panthers.
A big reason why his career is still in limbo is because much of the NFL’s activity has been shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic, just as has happened in other sports.
“There’s so much to kind of validate still and folks like us with a chip on their shoulder, the chip gonna turn into a family size real quick,” said Newton at around the 2:44 mark. “Me having a lot of time and then the uncertainty with the free agency situation, I’m in uncharted waters for the first time in my career.
“It’s so much possibility right now for me, but the fact that this corona situation has hit, and I’m not a person to blame or do any of that things, man, it’s business,” he added. “But at the same time, I think I have been affected in a lot of ways. … But, yeah, at the end of the day, man, I’m going to let the ball play how it play, man, and go from there.”
Newton also described himself as being a “fish out of water,” because he’s never played for another professional football team besides the Panthers.
So to cope with the uncertainty, he meditates every morning and works on strengthening his mind, body and spirit.
Last month, two days after the Panthers released him, Newton posted a workout video on Instagram and said the team gave up on him.
For his part, Paul, whose former Houston Rockets team apparently gave up on him when they traded him to the Thunder last offseason, also is using his downtime to keep his spirits up, but he’s letting fans get in on that process by going to his Instagram Live channel.
Newton was not the only superstar pro athlete Paul hosted on his IG Live Monday. Golden State Warriors star Steph Curry joined the channel that same day, and the two rival NBA guards had a blast reminiscing about all manner of league incidents, including an infamous 2015 play when Curry nearly broke Paul’s ankles with a vicious crossover followed by a jumper in a game from when Paul was still with the Los Angeles Clippers.
“Listen, man, listen, listen, he got me,” Paul said laughingly when the play came up in the conversation. Curry responded by saying any player can wind up on the wrong side of such a play.
”The funniest part of [it is] how many times we’ve all been dropped,” Curry said. “You done dropped me at least three times, I got you that one time in L.A., Brandon Jennings got me my rookie year. Like, you can never, ever live it down.”
See more on Paul’s session with Cam Newton below.