Adam Morrison Interview
With the third pick in the 2006 NBA Draft the Charlotte Bobcats selected big-time scorer Adam Morrison. The 6-8, 205-pound swingman, along with Emeka Okafor, Raymond Felton and others, is the future of the team. InsideHoops.com editor Jeff Lenchiner spoke with Morrison for an exclusive interview, touching on a wide range of topics.
InsideHoops.com: What player or players were the biggest influence on your game?
Adam Morrison: Everybody was a Michael Jordan fan, including myself. And I tried to study a lot of Larry Bird footage, to see what he did on the court.
InsideHoops.com: If you were to sit and watch basketball, what players would you want to watch? Players that are great, or fun, or both.
Adam Morrison: [Dirk] Nowitzki, definitely, would probably be my first pick. Steve Nash and probably Dwyane Wade. I think those three guys are my favorite players, as a fan, in the NBA. No disrespect to LeBron and Carmelo, but I'm just a big Nowitzki fan, since college, and Steve Nash, Dwyane Wade in the playoffs last year, how could you not enjoy watching them.
InsideHoops.com: In college, what were your favorite games, shots, moments?
Adam Morrison: When we played Oklahoma State in Key Arena, I hit a game-winner at the buzzer, which was a nationally televised game, and a big shot for me. The atmosphere in Key Arena was something special.
InsideHoops.com: Had you not gone to Gonzaga, where would you have gone?
Adam Morrison: The honest truth is, Gonzaga was the only school that gave me an offer. So, Gonzaga from day one.
InsideHoops.com: The Maui Invitational, which EA Sports sponsors, talk about the games, and how nice it probably is just to visit a beautiful place like that.
Adam Morrison: Obviously the tournament is always a great field; three games in three games, kind of helps you prepare for the NCAA Tournament, which I think is good. And you said it best, just being in Maui is something special, being on the beach, and hopefully some guys are lucky and have their families out there, girlfriends, kind of enjoy it with other people. So that's one thing I enjoyed. I think we spent Thanksgiving out there, which was pretty cool.
InsideHoops.com: You've only been in the NBA for a few weeks, but talk about the adjustment from college to the pros and the Bobcats.
Adam Morrison: I think the biggest adjustment is the 24 clock. It makes the game a lot faster. And obviously the back-to-back games and the travel is a big adjustment. But it's your profession and what you get paid for, so it's pretty fun doing.
InsideHoops.com: Is there a cooler job on the planet than being a pro basketball player?
Adam Morrison: For me personally, it's the greatest job in the world. We get paid, a lot, to do something you love. And to be able to perform in front of a huge fan audience every night. Everywhere we go the NBA is very popular. I think it's the greatest job, and the lifestyle is great. The whole gamet of things is very special.
InsideHoops.com: If you weren't able to play pro ball for a living, what do you think you'd be doing?
Adam Morrison: If I wasn't a player hopefully I'd be coaching right now. I know that kind of seems like another basketball thing, but to be honest with you, if there wasn't basketball I'd probably be, doing something, I don't know. I have no idea what I'd be doing.
InsideHoops.com: You're a big video game player, so it's fitting that EA Sports has taken you in. Talk about being on the cover of a major sports game.
Adam Morrison: You said it best, I'm a big gamer. I enjoy playing games, always enjoyed all the sports games EA puts out. So to be on the cover is very special. I'm looking forward to seeing what the cover is. I'm excited about it.
InsideHoops.com: What was the first video game you ever played. Or the first game you ever really liked and got hooked on?
Adam Morrison: The first game I really liked, which is an all-time American classic, is Tecmo Superbowl on regular Nintendo. People still have arguments today about who has the best team on that game. So for me, Tecmo Superbowl was the first game that I was addicted to.
InsideHoops.com: These days, is playing video games pretty much your main hobby off the court?
Adam Morrison: Yeah, pretty much. I'd like to say I put in three, four hours a day. Kind of embarrassing. But we have so much down time in the NBA when you're at home after practice. So, I definitely put in my hours.
InsideHoops.com: What's your system, the PS2 or Xbox?
Adam Morrison: Xbox 360, every time. I've always been an Xbox guy. The Xbox live is pretty special. I like the competition that comes along with Xbox, that's why I enjoy it more.
InsideHoops.com: The new NBA game ball, lots of players have vocalized their feelings about it. A lot don't like it. I've felt it when dry, and it's definitely really grippy, but players have said it's too slippery when wet. What's your take on it?
Adam Morrison: It's alright. The issue you brought up is true; when it gets wet it's very slippery. But the guys in the league are professionals, and guys can adjust. They've been doing it their whole life. So I think it was an issue at first. I think scoring has been the same. The only thing that I think has been up is turnovers. It's something that guys will adjust to and I don't think it'll be a big deal.
InsideHoops.com: The NBA age minimum, which as I'm sure you know means players have to be 19 or older, and a year or more out of high school -- how do you feel about it?
Adam Morrison: I've always had a double-sided opinion on it. I think that it's good in some aspects for people to go to school and get that college experience and learn a lot... getting away from home. It's good for guys who might get bad advice and come out early and not make it. Or get drafted late when they could have gone to college and get drafted higher, have a chance to play. But in the same respect it's not fair to guys who are ready, who could be lottery picks or first round picks and don't have that opportunity, maybe get injured in college, or maybe some guys' families need the money right away. That's the unspoken part of it. Some guys need the money to take care of people off the court. I don't have a real solid opinion either way because I see both sides of it.
InsideHoops.com: The NBA rookie of the year award. Is it on your mind? To what extent? The season just started so there's a long way to go, but how mindful of it are you? I'm sure you want to win it.
Adam Morrison: Yeah, it would definitely be a great achievement if I can do it. But I've said before, I just want to help this team win and help the organization grow and help the city of Charlotte get a winning organization back in the city. So, it's definitely in my mind, but it's not my number one priority.
A free demo of NCAA March Madness 07 will be availble on Xbox Marketplace next week. And the EA SPORTS Maui Invitational begins November 20.