December 14, 2011

by Shabazz Muhammad / @phenom15balla

Hey, this is Shabazz. I’m so glad the NBA lockout is over. I can’t wait for Christmas so we can finally start watching games. Who do I like this year? I like Miami… I like Dallas now that they got Lamar… and of course I’m a Lakers fan, so I still think the Lakers are good, especially if they can get Dwight Howard. It’s just going to be great to be able to see games again.

For me, right now it’s just basketball, basketball, basketball. We played our first game last Friday, and it felt good. We beat Durango, 93-53, and we really played well together. (You can see video highlights here.) One of the big things for us this year is that we unite as a team, trust each other, and just play hard. Being the number one player in the country, I know a lot of guys on my team look up to me, the younger guys especially. But they’re really catching on. Those guys really listen.

We know we’re going to have a target on our backs this season, so it’s going to be interesting to see how we come out in big tournaments like City of Palms this weekend, or when we play DeMatha up in Springfield in January. I think we have a really good team and a great mindset as a group. Those games are a chance to show what we’re made of.

Rosco Allen plays a really big role for us—he can shoot the ball, and he helps me out when I’m getting double-teamed. Ben Carter is out right now with a fractured foot, but he’s really going to help us when he comes back. And then I think my brother, Rashad, is going to help us out a lot this year, too. We have a really good relationship, and he’s used to practicing against me, which is big.

No changes on my college list. Of course, living in Las Vegas, I hear a lot from UNLV fans. They’re great. Our first game, there were a whole bunch of them there. They’ve had some great victories this year, like beating North Carolina. I’ve seen video of those great old teams with Coach Tarkanian, and they really emphasize that, saying how we can bring it back to that. It’s a great program, that’s why they’re still in the mix for me.

I’m still talking to lots of other guys in my class, too. At pretty much all the schools I’m looking at, I’m good friends with someone who’s already signed, so everybody’s in my ear. It’s been fun.

Alright, check me out in the next issue. I’ll be back next month.