Malone, however, went on to hedge just a little.
"But the kids are getting older now," he said.
Then he added, ""I'm never saying never. We'll see what happens."
Malone certainly could handle the media requirements. On Friday, he held court in the Crescent City, smiling as he took on a barrage of questions from reporters.
Who is the better power forward, him or Tim Duncan?
"First of all, Tim Duncan is just a player," he said. "And I don't like talking about me, so I'm going to say Tim Duncan because I love to see him play."
Which player reminds him of himself?
"Without the jumping part … I'd say Blake Griffin," Malone said, and added that he would like to see Griffin get angry when he's fouled cheaply to stop a dunk, even offering to pay his fine.
Terrence Ross is back to defend his Slam Dunk title. Paul George threw down a 360 windmill in a game a couple of weeks ago. But Malone likes someone else to win Saturday: former Weber State point guard Damian Lillard.
"He's my dark horse," Malone said.
No Big Easy for Big Al
Former Jazz forward Paul Millsap was asked Friday who he thought this year's biggest All-Star snub was and one name came to mind immediately.
"One of my good friends, Al Jefferson," Millsap said. "I feel like he's done a great job up to this point making that team a playoff team. If I had to say one guy, he's definitely it."