Pops Mensah-Bonsu Interview
On Saturday the NBDL had its first annual D-League All-Star Game. Pops Mensah-Bonsu stepped up to win the contest's MVP award. Here's what Mensah-Bonsu said in the post-game interview to D-League reporters.
Q. You didnít look very tired out there for a guy who had a busy week.
Mensah-Bonsu: I can feel it though, I came from Houston a couple of days ago and then I went to Austin yesterday and I played. And going back up to the Mavericks I usually donít get that much time, so I had to find a way to get my wind back, and yesterday I didnít play so well. So I wanted to come back and show Coach [Sidney] Moncrief that I was going to be able to play and I was going to make up for what happened yesterday, so I just wanted to come and play as hard as I could, which is the only way I know how to play.
Q. Talk about it what its like to be an environment with these other players.
Mensah-Bonsu: Iím just glad Iím here. When they said that I had made the team, I was already back up with the Mavericks so I told some of the people in the front office that I really wanted to play. And I really wanted to be a part of this whole event so I just made it my goal to come back and play. It wasnít about winning the MVP for me; it was about being with these great players and being known as one of the better players in the D-League. So Iím just glad I was part of the whole event.
Q. The Mavericks are pretty deep. Do you think a performance like this will help you with another team?
Mensah-Bonsu: Iím a Maverick; Iím going to be a Maverick. Weíre on a very deep team, so as competitive as I am, I am not really as mad that Iím not getting a lot of time because we obviously have the best power forward in the game and the best team in the NBA. Iím on a good team, so I canít complain about not getting a lot of minutes, my time will come, and I have to pay my dues. So, I think this is part of it too.
Q. What do you think you need to do to make the NBA on a full-time basis?
Mensah-Bonsu: Be more consistent. I think the question about me is whether I can guard multiple positions. Whether I can be more consistent on offense, and make sure that Iím a defensive threat at the same time. I think what coach [Avery Johnson] wants from me is more experience. I havenít been playing basketball too long, so my basketball IQ Ė Iím increasing that everyday. So Iím just trying to learn as much as possible and pick up as much as I can from some of my teammates.
Q. Talk about some of the people that have helped you get to this point.
Mensah-Bonsu. The whole Dallas Mavericks, I got players likes Josh Howard, Jerry Stackhouse. Theyíre really helpful in getting me along in this whole process. They schooled me in what to do and what not to do. And being down in the D-League has been great for me. I go down there, Iím getting the reps, and Iím playing all the minutes. So it helps me build my confidence, so when I go back up with the Mavericks Iím ready to go and Iím not sloppy and Iím not out of synch.