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Post-NBA Draft Q&A with Trevor Booker

Post-NBA Draft Q&A with Trevor Booker

June 28, 2010

What was the initial reaction when you heard your name called in Thursday’s draft? “Well, I heard I was considered for Boston with the 19th pick. I also heard possibly Oklahoma City (No. 21). The worst case scenario was that the latest would be Washington at No. 30. My agent told me they were going to try to move up to get me. But, he thought it would be somewhere around No. 25. I was just walking around at our private draft party, and the next thing you know everybody just started screaming. I looked at the TV and my name popped up.”

What were the family emotions like? “My mom definitely cried. Everybody just started hugging me and congratulating me. I just raised my hands in the air, but I didn’t break down though.”

Talk about the decision to come back for your senior season and its effect on your draft stock? “I think it helped me a lot. I was able to show the scouts what I had improved on, especially with my perimeter game. But, in the NBA I’m still going to play the 4 position (power forward). I showed them a lot of what I could do when I came back.”

Why do you think NBA personnel wanted to keep you as a power forward? “They see me as an aggressive player that loves to rebound. They see me as a player like Paul Millsap (Utah Jazz) or Carl Landry (Sacramento Kings), who aren’t necessarily the tallest, but they’re having great success in the NBA right now. They think they can do the same thing with me. I’m looking forward to it.”

What does it mean to the program, and what does it mean to you personally to fulfill this dream? “It means a lot for the program. Before I came, it was down a little bit. A couple of classes before I came, they started building the program. It’s continuing to rise, and this is a big step for Clemson basketball. For me, personally, this means a lot. Being in the NBA has been a lifelong dream, and it came true.”

Was it a big weight off your shoulders to be taken in the first round? “It was tough going from city to city over the past month. All the traveling paid off, though. I went out and busted my butt every day during the workout process.”

What were your thoughts on the trade that sent you from Minnesota to Washington, and what are your thoughts on the future? “As soon as they called my name and said I was going to Minnesota, my agent called and said I was going to Washington. I was happy either way it went. But now that I’m with Washington, I’m very excited. I think we’ve got a lot of pieces to do special things next year. We’ve got a lot of talent. John Wall is an amazing player. I’ve heard Gilbert Arenas is coming back. I’ve hung around Josh Howard a couple of times. He’s a great player. Andray Blatche had an amazing end to his season last year. I’m just going to try and step in and play my role.

“I’ll be in the Wizards’ summer league in a couple of weeks. Everyone has already talked about coming up to see me play because it is pretty close. I can still come home and watch my brother play at times, and then go down the road to get a home-cooked meal.”