He didn't mean it to sound quite like it did, but nevertheless, it didn't sound great.
"I saw some of the plays I remember when I was in junior high," said Jazzman Gordon Hayward, 21, referring to teammate Jamaal Tinsley, 33.
Yes, it's true. Young Gordon was just a kid living outside Indianapolis when Tinsley was in his heyday with the Indiana Pacers. And, yes, it's also true that Gordon and Jamaal are now teammates on the Utah Jazz, even though they're a dozen years apart.
"I think I told him one time I remember going to an (autograph signing) and he was at the table and I was one of the fans," Hayward said.
But don't for a second think Hayward is bagging on his more experienced teammate. On the contrary, actually.
Tinsley, who played for the Pacers from 2001 through 2008, is Utah's No. 3 point guard behind Devin Harris and Earl Watson. Having a veteran with 446 games experience as your third-string point guard is a wonderful luxury to have, especially during this season's lockout-shortened 66-game schedule.
Given the number of games crammed into a fairly short period of time, injuries are going to happen. It's a fact.
In fact, the Jazz have already seen a few bumps and bruises to Harris and Watson.
Last week, both happened to miss the Jazz's 119-101 blowout loss at Golden State.
Tinsley, who had played sparingly up to that point, started and played 34 minutes in the second game of a back-to-back series. Playing alongside Hayward, he finished with nine points and 13 assists, a season high for any Jazz player.
So, you see, even though the Jazz lost the game, Hayward had a smile on his face when asked about the play of Tinsley. After all, he remembers some of Tinsley's finest moments with the Pacers and he saw flashes of them that night against the Warriors.
"He did a great job running the show for us," he said.
Doing what reporters often do, we jumped on Hayward's comment about remembering Tinsley when he was in junior high. And of course, we went to Tinsley with it, anxious to see if he'd give some sort of a funny response.
Turns out he's a little too soft-spoken for that. He's not exactly Charles Barkley.
Asked if he'd have to "get after" Hayward for such a comment, Tinsley just smiled and said, "Not at all."
Then he added, "It's always nice to know guys in junior high, high school and college look up at you and want your autograph. Now I get a chance to play with (Hayward). He's a great guy."
Of course he's all about the Jazz now, but as a kid Hayward was a huge Pacers fan.
You just know he had a bunch of questions for Tinsley when he signed with the Jazz last December.
"Actually, we've talked about a couple of things," Tinsley said. "Some good times, some bad times. But he was a big Pacers fan."
Turns out Tinsley was a Hayward fan, too.
He said he attended a few Butler games when Hayward was playing his college ball there.
"His school was right down the block from my house," he said.
Pretty neat, huh?
Look, I know the sports world isn't perfect and in the grand scheme of things it's quite insignificant. But at a time when so many sad, terrible things happen on a daily basis, there's something reassuring -- something enjoyable -- about a couple of guys, 12 years apart and from diverse backgrounds, having the connection Hayward and Tinsley share.
Jim Burton is the Standard-Examiner's sports columnist. He also covers the Utah Jazz and the NBA. He can be reached at 801-625-4265 or at email@example.com. He tweets at http://twitter.com/jmb247