Facing all but certain elimination, the New Jersey Nets’ Richard Jefferson cannot be stopped when it comes to providing the Star-Ledger’s Dave D’Alessandro with a playoff caliber quote or two.

The only thing that will work for the Nets, meanwhile, is for Atlanta to lose eight in a row. But when they claim that they’re not going down without a fight, they say it with a straight face, so that’s a good sign.

RJ even said this with a straight face: That “controlling your own destiny” stuff is overrated.

“Let’s be real. Let’s say miraculously we were to win every single game down the stretch. I have a feeling that we would have a pretty good chance of making it,” Jefferson said. “So in turn, you still do (control your destiny). Now, in two days from now, three days from now it might change. But you have to go at it with a positive attitude. You can’t all of a sudden say, ‘Oh no, oh no, oh no,’ because what happens if you lose a game? Is the world going to end? No.”

Jefferson says for the first time, he’s going to watch the playoffs this year. His Final Four: Boston, Detroit, L.A., San Antonio. Usually he’s not especially interested in this stuff, because the disappointment of being eliminated still stings. This time, he’s into it. The games matter. The excitement is building. The climax should be thrilling.

Does that mean he’s watching the important games now, such as Knicks versus Hawks?

“No – God, no,”
he said. “Knicks-Hawks. That would be like watching us and the Knicks.”