Big Things

I can’t lie, it was tough being traded.

I feel like I did a lot of things right on Pistons GT last year. I was an MVP candidate and led them to the playoffs.

It’s a business, I understand that. I don’t really take it personally. I understand how things go. Best of luck to them, I have no hate in my blood for them.

Pistons GT welcomed me with open arms. I like their manager, Adam Rubin, and their coach, Duane. All five players I had on my team I consider my brothers. It’s nothing but love for all of them and I wouldn’t trade season one for the world.

They traded me, and it gave me some extra fire. I want to go harder than even what I did to get into the 2K League. Go harder than I did last season.

I don’t feel like I have to prove myself. I’m a top player in the world and I’m going to show out. If they didn’t feel like keeping me, that’s their loss. I’m going to prove them wrong. I’m going to make them regret that.

I plan on doing big things out here in Indy. I want people in the city to know my name by the end of the season.

Everything happens for a reason. I’m just ready to go to work with Pacers Gaming.

Right now, we’ve got the Big three. That’s the best three in the league.

We’ve got the best sharpshooter in the league in Swizurk. We’ve got the best lockdown defender in Wolf. And I feel like I’m the best big man right now in the league.

I’ve competed against both of those guys for a very long time and am really familiar with them. Wolf is a real cool guy, we met last year, and he’s also from New York. I’ve know Swiz for a few years and he’s always been a guy who I’ve known was good with his stick skills. He’s a cool guy off the court, too.

It’s been great so far. We’re all just meshing now. We’ve been playing together all offseason long, just trying to build that chemistry and lead by example.

Most importantly, we’re trying to form a brothership over here. We don’t want to just play 2K. We want to hang out together off the court, hang out together at the apartments, just be there for each other. I want everyone to just vibe and be on the same page.

We are in great shape at the moment. We added some strong players to the mix during the draft. We’re going to be a tough team to beat.

Personally, I feel I’m one of the top-three trash-talkers in the league. I’m from New York, that’s all we do is talk trash. Especially playing basketball when I was younger. You play mind games and try to get in other people’s heads. It just happens to be I’m good at it.

I’ve got a little something for everybody we play against. It’s not the same thing. I see what gets to them. You say certain stuff and can look at their facial expression and see it’s working.

I know most of the guys in the 2K League. I’ve been playing with them online and competing against them for years. I’m very familiar with them, I know what gets to them.

Why is my trash-talking effective? A lot of people are used to playing the game at home, in a chat party with their friends, and they’re not used to hearing the other team.

Now you’ve got somebody who is playing you in real life, sitting five, ten feet away from you playing the game. You can’t help but hear them in your ear as you try to concentrate on the game with your teammates.

That’s talking trash. You’re not just talking to them, you’re talking trash. You’re getting in their head, and they’re getting all flustered. That’s the point. You want to play mind games and get them rattled to where they are thrown off their game.

When I got hype last season, I would say “big-time players make big-time plays.” I always would break out the fishing rod move and tell them they were “baited.” I also love saying “Gerber Baby,” especially to big men. Like they are soft. It all just comes naturally to me.

Trash talk aside, I feel I’m a high IQ basketball player. I know I can fit into any system. I have leadership and all the intangibles that any top player in the world needs to play any position.

I just bring that hard work and grit. I think people feed off that. I like to lead by example and make sure everybody follows me on what I’m doing to keep us all on the same page. If I’m working hard, I want you to work even harder than me.

I definitely learned a lot from my first season in the league. You learn how to be a professional and how to manage time. Then dealing with money, living on your own for the first time in your life, how to interact with different people. And you’ve got to be a leader on top of it all.

I was honoured to be among the five finalists for the MVP Award last season. But truthfully, I never really cared about winning MVP. Being in consideration just happened naturally, I never was focused on it.

I can’t really say I could have done anything more than I did. All I cared about was winning the championship. Give me Finals MVP, forget about the regular season. Nobody really cares about the regular season.

I’m aiming for the championship this season. I’m aiming for the three banners for the three in-season tournaments. I want it all, honestly.

We’ve got a great core of guys, a great coach and GM, and a great organization in Indianapolis. We’re set up for success

We want the main prize: the championship.  

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