Paul M. Banks has an exclusive with the NBA All-Star and Olympic Gold Medalist Carlos Boozer.
Booze is a two time NBA All-Star and member of last year’s All-NBA Third team. Boozer also won a Bronze medal in Athens during the 2004 Olympic games. Since his 2002-03 NBA All-Rookie team season, Boozer has finished the season among the league’s top ten performers in field goal percentage five times and top ten rebounders twice.
He is known for his strength, rebounding and offensive skill set. ESPN.com, lists Boozer among the “game’s best post players” and among the best at scoring (or “finishing”) under the basket with either hand Boozer credits his father for helping him develop his ambidextrous ability.
In the 2006-07 NBA season, Boozer appeared in the NBA Fundamentals series hosted by TNT, in which NBA players explain certain aspects of basketball. He explained the topic “post play”. In this clip, Boozer highlighted the technique of how to establish position in the low post, and how to most effectively score from that position. Boozer showcased his array of ambidextrous slam dunks and hook shots, and reminded viewers to insert an occasional jump shot to confuse the opponent. He also expressed his admiration of retired NBA greats Karl Malone and Charles Barkley, who he sees as masters of low post scoring.
I recently sat down with him in Milwaukee and opened the interview by asking him to describe his Gold Medal winning experience in Beijing. “I’ll tell you the same thing everyone is going to tell you, it was amazing, we had a goal set in mind and I think for all of us, the players, coaches, staff all included it was probably the biggest thing we’ve been a part of in sports,” Boozer responded.
I asked Booze if he would do it again in 2012…“Absolutely, it’s an honor anytime you get to wear USA across your chest,”…and later to describe what it’s like taking the court in the NBA against someone who was previously your teammate in representing America.
“We’re like brothers, all of us have a special bond; we’re all very close. We stay in touch and talk all the time now, just because of the experience we went through, and the team that brought back pride to USA basketball,” Boozer responded.
What are your thoughts on Chicago as a sports town and Olympic host?
“Huge sports town, great fans very committed, great venue, great to have it here in the states, we haven’t had it since Atlanta. And I think it would be well received, we’d have a great turnout here I think, other countries love to come play here”
It helps that the international icon of basketball, Michael Jordan made his name for himself there….
“Absolutely, and I had a chance to see the plan, they have a great plan for it too”
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