Category Archive  Interview‘

 
 

INTERVIEW: MCW1

Posted by: Alex Gorge
07/11/13 5:04 pm EST

It’s thirty minutes after the Sixers third straight loss in the OPSL, and lottery pick Michael Carter-Williams emerges from the locker room with ice packs on his knees and a smile on his face.

You would think, and it would be understandable, that the 6’5 point guard would be exhibiting some amount of frustration over his summer team’s record and his personal performance (15-60 shooting).  But on the contrary, Carter-Williams’ body language is upbeat and his mind is focused on the future.  As the interview commenced, the first question I asked was about his struggles shooting at OPSL and if he attributes that to tough defense or shots just not falling.

“It’s a little bit of everything.  I’m getting the shots I want it’s just about me knocking them down,” Carter-Williams opened up.


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DRAFT13: CODY ZELLER INTERVIEW

Posted by: Jake Fischer
06/19/13 1:00 pm EST

If you have paid any attention to the basketball world since 2005, you are very aware of the Zeller family.  The family’s oldest son, Luke first joined the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in 2005 before graduating in 2009.  Tyler soon entered the college realm in 2008, suiting up for the esteemed North Carolina Tar Heels.  He graduated in 2012, but not before serving as a reserve in a national championship game and being named an AP 2nd Team All-American in his senior year.

Then, along came along Cody.  After he posted a stellar freshman campaign in 2011-2012, he decided to stay at Indiana for one more season and was considered to be the front-runner for the top pick in the 2013 NBA Draft.

During the 2012-13 college basketball season, Cody and fellow top draft prospect Victor Oladipo, helped Indiana hold the No. 1 overall ranking in the AP Poll for a total of 11 weeks over two separate stints.  Tom Crean, Zeller and company earned a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament and were thinking championship.  But, a sensational season for Zeller and the Hoosiers came to end in a somewhat embarrassing defeat at the hands of Syracuse in the Elite 8.

Putting IU’s “March Madness” disappointment behind him, Zeller went to work on his game and body.  All of the hours he logged were obvious during mid-May at the NBA Combine in Chicago, as Zeller tested off the charts in the Combine’s athleticism drills and physical measurements.  He did not participate in any live-ball activity in Chicago, but the reports from his post-Combine individual workouts have been stellar.

That’s good news for Philadunkia nation as nearly every creditable NBA Draft blog or website has the Sixers picking Cody Zeller on June 27th, 2013.   According to the blogosphere, the Sixers selecting Zeller is a bigger lock than Kim Kardashian having her picture taken by the paparazzi today.

Given the likelihood of Zeller becoming a Sixer, Philadunkia scribe Jake Fischer recently caught up with Cody before his workout with the Charlotte Bobcats to talk about his ongoing Draft process and the possibility of being selected by the Sixers at #11.


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TIME WITH TODD

Posted by: Michael Kaskey-Blomain
05/29/13 9:40 am EST

Todd MacCulloch may not be a name synonymous with NBA success, but for a period of time in the early 2000’s he was a big part of some very good teams. His numbers were never eye-popping, but he was a consistent contributor to two Finals-bound teams, and enjoyed four solid seasons before a chronic foot condition forced him into an early retirement.

Most notably, he was a member of the most recent Sixer team to make it as far as the Finals, serving as a backup to Dikembe Mutombo. Recently, Todd sat down with Steven LeBron Radio to discuss his time in the NBA, playing with Allen Iverson, and his career as a pinball player.

It’s always good to hear from Todd.

After the jump, check out some highlights of what he had to say, and be sure to check out the full podcast at Steven LeBron radio.


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INTERVIEW: DAMIEN WILKINS

Posted by: Jake Fischer
03/29/13 11:42 am EST

A quick Google Images search of Damien Wilkins will put his career for you in a nutshell.  In that search, you’ll see the 6-6, 225 pound swingman dawning a vast variety of the NBA jerseys.  Wilkins has been one of the lucky few who have been able to live the life of an NBA journeyman.

But recently, Wilkins, the current starting shooting guard for the 76ers, hasn’t been playing like a nomadic bench player.  In fact, the 8-year veteran out of the University of Georgia has been averaging 15.2 points, 2.4 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.6 steals in 29.0 minutes per game over the team’s last five contests.  Wilkins, who has started 10 games for the Sixers, has been a spark plug for Doug Collins’ team ever since he was inserted into the starting unit to replace a hobbled Nick Young.

Even though the veteran and well-respected locker room presence has been turning heads on the court for the Sixers of late, not many in the City of Brotherly Love truly know a lot about Wilkins off the court and what his thoughts have been about his first season rocking the fabled red, white and blue.

With that in mind, Philadunkia scribe, Jake Fischer, caught up with the Sixers’ cagey veteran and talked about his family lineage, the Sixers struggles this season, his days with the Seattle Supersonics and his obsession with Wawa.

 
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INTERVIEW: JRUE HOLIDAY

Posted by: Jeff McMenamin
03/13/13 3:00 am EST

As we all know, in the summer of 2012 the 76ers front office traded Andre Iguodala, cut ties with Elton Brand and let Louis Williams walk.  When Doug Collins & company removed these important veterans from the Sixers roster Jrue Holiday was thrust into several key roles for this team. 

Jrue’s now the floor general,  primary option on offense,  locker room leader and  face of the franchise.  That’s a heavy load for a 22-year old to carry.

So how has Jrue responded during the most challenging season of his young NBA life? 

Career highs in points and assists.

Eighteen double-doubles.

One triple-double.

Four games with 30 or more points.

A trip to the 2013 All-Star Game.  

In short, he’s stepped up to the challenge.  In fact, to say that Jrue Holiday has been one of the few bright spots for the 76ers (tip of the cap to Thad Young) in an otherwise very disappointing year for this franchise is an understatement.       

Earlier this week, Jrue jumped on the phone with Philadunkia’s Jeff McMenamin for a few minutes to discuss his breakout season, playing in the 2013 NBA All-Star Game, the struggling Sixers, the difficulty of the upcoming schedule and of course, Andrew Bynum. 


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INTERVIEW: SWAGGY STAR(TER)

Posted by: Jeff McMenamin
02/11/13 8:00 am EST

Fashionable?  Check.

Exciting to watch?  Check.

Catchy nickname?  Check.

There’s a lot of reasons to like Nick “Swaggy P” Young.  After a miserable start to the season, Young found himself riding the almighty pine.  He registered five DNP’s from coach Doug Collins and fans became uneasy with the idea of giving any kind of minutes to Young for an already offensively challenged team.

Then January rolled around.  Young strung together a few solid performances off the bench, even though the Sixers still piled up losses, and coach Doug Collins felt like it was time to make a switch.

He inserted Young into the starting lineup and the Sixers have gone 5-2 ever since.  He’s had four games of over 15 points during that span, including 20 in a 97-80 domination of the Knicks.

Over the weekend, Philadunkia scribe Jeff McMenamin, got a chance to talk to Young about his recent success as well as his intricate personality that fans are getting to know and love.

 


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INTERVIEW: TUCKER COLTON (a.k.a. TUCK MONEY)

Posted by: Jake Fischer
02/06/13 10:00 am EST

The 76ers are now amidst their first three-game winning streak since November 25-30, and outside of Andrew Bynum’s continued absence and Thad’s hamstring strain, which will put him out the lineup for three weeks, a number of things are going well for the NBA team that inhabits the Wells Fargo Center.

All-Star point guard, Jrue Holiday, continues to play well.  A rejuvenated Spencer Hawes is finely contributing on a nightly basis.  Nick Young continues to thrive as a starter.  Lavoy Allen has found a pulse and Sixers ball boy Tucker Colton (a.k.a. Tuck Money) is blowing up on the Internet. 

Wait, what?!?

That’s right, in the last week the Sixers have put together their first significant winning stretch in over two months and the most popular Sixers topic on the web is the team’s ball boy (@tuckcolt) and his crazy mic skills.  

Philadunkia scribe Jake Fischer recently caught up with Colton (pic at left with Swaggy) and learned about the ins and outs of being a NBA ball boy as well as Colton’s music career.

 
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INTERVIEW: XAVIER SILAS

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/18/13 1:43 pm EST

In the eyes of most basketball fans as well as NBA analysts and experts, the game has changed from a half-court, big man dominated game, to an up-tempo League focused on exemplary guard play.

While the Sixers have found their point guard of the future in Jrue Holiday, the question remains of who can fill the role as a serviceable backup to our borderline All-Star floor general.

There have been number of ideas suggested by the scribes here at Philadunkia as to what the Sixers should do to cure their problems at back-up point guard.  Of course all of them have fallen on deaf ears over at PCOM. 

The Sixers have also tried their own ideas.  Royal Ivey who was signed as a free agent this past summer was unable to grab the job during his brief audition.  Then there was a failed attempt to let the undrafted Maalik Wayns win the spot.  Of course “the Evan Turner as the back-up point guard experiment” continues nightly with lukewarm results. 

Yesterday, the Sixers cut Wayns and signed free agent Shelvin Mack to a 10-day contract.  As you probably know, Mack was just waived by the Washington Wizards after his disappointing rookie season.   It was a curious move to say the least.  Obviously the chances of Mack playing significant minutes for Collins, much less solving this nagging problem for the Sixers are nil.  To be honest we here at Philadunkia have become totally worn out trying to figure out why the Sixers have failed to address this issue.

So in order to hear a fresh take on the 7-6 and their back-up PG situation I decided to conduct an interview with a subject who has a unique view on the inner working of the Sixers back-court.  Earlier this week I sat down with former 76ers guard, Xavier Silas.  If you recall, Silas had a long cup of coffee with the 7-6 in 2012-13, but only appeared in two games.  Silas was also with Philadunkia’s home team for the Orlando Pro Summer League team and was in camp with Collins & Co. this past fall. 

Silas now plays for the Maine Red Claws, of the NBA’s D-League organization where he is averaging 10.8 points, 3 boards and 2.8 dimes per night.  He also was a teammates with Shelvin Mack for a stretch up in Maine.

Aftre the jump some Q&A withXavier Silas…


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INTERVIEW: TIM LEGLER

Posted by: Tim Parker
01/11/13 10:10 am EST

Here at Philadunkia we have chosen to completely ignore the debacle that happened up in Toronto on Wednesday night.  Many of us here viewed that contest as the worst performance of the year by the 7-6.  We can understand soiling the bed in San Antonio during the final game of a long and challenging 8-game road trip, but what exactly is the excuse for the Sixers uninspiring effort vs. the Raptors?  In our collective opinion there is none. 

Look, we realize that this roster is tragically flawed with Bynum out of the lineup.  And we understand that fact is a huge obstacle to ask a team and head coach to overcome for nearly 40 games.  We also acknowledge that the Sixers schedule has been brutal of late.  Still this team is better than what they have shown in the last two games.  The effort at the Wells Fargo Center on Tuesday night vs. Brooklyn was weak and what happened in Toronto was downright embarrassing.   To say we are frustrated with this team is an understatement.

So in order to avoid a very negative rant style post by one of our writers and in an effort to find some solutions to the Sixers problems, we are turning to ESPN analyst Tim Legler.  Why Legler?  Well, Legler is not just a former NBA player and a great NBA analyst; he’s also one of us (At least in our eyes).   

Legler scored over 1,500 points at LaSalle, is a member of the Big 5 Hall of Fame, earned a MBA from The Wharton School and is married to a former Eagles cheerleader.  So Legler is as Philadunkia as Dr. J, Allen Iverson and The Spectrum.  As a bonus, he still lives in the Philadelphia area, attends numerous Sixer games each year and is actually somewhat of a 76ers fan.  Basically, he knows the 7-6 inside and out. 

Yesterday Legler gave me some time to Philadunkia scribe Tim Parker to discuss numerous Sixers topics, including why the Sixers have struggled so badly this season. 


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INTERVIEW: THAD YOUNG

Posted by: Tom Sunnergren
09/12/12 7:10 am EST

There was a time not too long ago (about 24 months if you’re a stickler for exactitude) that Thaddeus Young had the distinct look of a player who might struggle to find his place in the NBA.  The criticism directed at him: heavy and possibly deserved.

 

After an outstanding rookie season and a middling follow-up, he just withered in the context of Eddie Jordan’s ill conceived Princeton O.  In retrospect it’s not exactly an enormous surprise that a player who’s game is predicated on athleticism and the fast break would be less successful in a system that doesn’t have much use for those skills.  Still, all the same, the plain fact was that Thad struggled in 2009-10

 

But then something happened: Thad started playing much, much better.  He swore off the three-ball and began attacking the rim.  The result: a season after, by the reckoning of Wins Produced, that he tallied negative wins for the Sixershe played 56 percent better than the average forward.  When was just as good in 2011-12, his head-scratching roller coaster story felt complete.  Some chalk up his rise to the influence of Doug Collins, whose arrival coincided neatly with his resurgence.  Some point to maturity, natural progression.  Some just shrug: in the NBA, stuff happens.

 

Whatever the factors that underpin his unusual volatility, one thing is clear: the Sixers (big ticket off-season acquisitions not withstanding) will absolutely need Thad to be his best self if they’re to repeat last season’s run.

 

In a recent conversation with Philadunkia, the now-longest tenured Sixer looked ahead to the coming season, talked about which position he’s going to play, and told us why, when a friend told him the Sixers had landed Andrew Bynum, he didn’t believe him.

 

Q and A, as always, after the J.


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