Friday, January 26, 2007

ESPN chat with Alando Tucker

Alando Tucker chatted with ESPN's "sports nation" over the noon hour today. I pulled some of his more interesting responses and pasted them below for your enjoyment, along with my comments. You can read the transcript of the entire chat by clicking here 'Do Tucker Chat

Q: How is the team reacting to all the national attention? Must feel good to finally get the RESPECT.

Alando Tucker: For me personally, I think it's great. We've responded well. We try not to pay attention to all the hoopla. We've done a great job separating what goes on with the rankings and what goes on on the court. Now we have a target and with that target comes responsibility. We're taking it and running with it. We've worked hard to get here and we don't want to give it up.

Q: With your team record being 20-1, do you worry about peaking as a team too early in the season?

Alando Tucker: No. The main reason is how we prepare for each game. We never relax throughout the season. We still have something to prove. I try to tell people that we still have something to prove. I tell them that we're not getting our due respect. We are getting it, but that's the mentality that you have to have. Teams that relax and take everything and settle for it, those are the teams that drop out from being the top teams in the nation.

Comment: This is why the Badgers are succeeding even after having the target on their back as a top-5 team - they're a team that still plays with a chip on their shoulder because they know if they lose a game, everyone will start questioning whether Wisconsin really belongs at the top of the rankings.

Q: You've played against Oden already. Does he look like he's about 40 in person too or is that just the tv?

Alando Tucker: He's definitely an old man right now at his age. He's raw talent right now. He still has some things he has to work on, but right now defensively, he's as tough as they come. He blocks a lot of shots. He has some upside. He'll just have to tone some of that raw skill up. But as far as his looks, the only thing I can say is that he's a man right now for his age.

Comment: This comes dangerously close to bulletin board material for Ohio St..."an old man right now at his age" - hah.

Q: You guys got a big overtime scare from Winthrop earlier this year...what was your impression of those guys?

Alando Tucker: Winthrop came ready to play. What we took from that game is that everyone that's going to play us is going to play their best. In the past, we were looking for teams that were highly ranked to beat them. That's what people are trying to do against us. Every team is going to try their best. But they're a good team, especially when they're shooting the ball like they were against us.

Comment: Especially against the good teams from lower-tier conferences, Wisconsin has gotten the other team's best shots during the entire the season. Teams are trying to build NCAA tournament credentials and a win against a top 5 team is a great way to do it.

Q: Do you model your game after any other players?
Alando Tucker: I'm a Chicago player, so definitely Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen. A more recent guy is D-Wade. People ask me how would I react playing in the NBA, I look to Wade and say that's what I can do. To work as hard and try to prove myself at the next level. I definitely model my game after the Chicago players, but I try to establish my identity as my own players.
Comment: D-Wade? Hmmm....not so sure that NBA scouts agree. But no one really saw Wade being as dominant as he has been in the Association, so maybe....

Q: You're from the Chi, you have to be cheering for the Bears next Sunday right?

Alando Tucker: Oh yeah. I'm a big Bears fan. I have my orange and blue on here. I know I'll be hated by a lot of people in Wisconsin, because they're all about Green Bay. But I'll always root for Chicago, no matter where I'm at.

Comment: Well, he can't be perfect. I need to go brush my teeth now - pretty sure I just vomited in my mouth.

1 comment:

Htiek said...

Let's just hope he doesnt get interviewed by SI and decide to talk about how gay he is and how his two best friends are girls. I still could not understand what Devin Harris was thinking. Matt I cant beleive you didnt advise hime better back in the day.