Saturday, February 16th, 2008 at 2:59 pm  |  21 responses

Deron Williams calm before the skills Q&A

Sitting with one of tonight’s contestants as he trains

By Sam Rubenstein

Our friends from SONY hooked up the chance to talk to Utah Jazz superstar PG Deron Williams in the hours leading up to the the Playstation Skills Challenge. Deron is getting ready for the big showdown tonight by practicing with the video game NBA ’08. Wrap your head around this circular logic: Deron is a real life basketball player, training for real life using a video game simulation, but the company that makes the simulation also sponsors the real life event… wait I’m confused.

Anyways, tonight is the skills challenge. I sat with Deron as he trained. The interview was interrupted with lots of bursts of Aaaaaah! when he’d mess up, and I respect his level of focus. There’s nothing worse than having someone force you to talk to them when you’re trying to play a video game. But Deron was a good sport.
SLAM: Have you been practicing for tonight at all?

DERON: Nothing extra in real life. This is it right here. I’m practicing with this game.

S: Are you nervous?

D: Oh yeah, I’m nervous. I think I’m gonna miss the shot, maybe a bad pass or something.

S: How much does this mean to you? How badly do you want to win?

D: Well, I’m a competitor. I always want to win at whatever I do. Basketball, golf, I suck at golf. But I don’t want to lose, man.

S: You always seem to be associated with someone else, the great team at Illinois, always tied to Chris Paul or Carlos Boozer. Is this your big night where you get to say I’m Deron Williams dammit!

D: (chuckles) It’s more about going out there and having fun. I want to go out there and give the fans a good show. I would like to be playing in the All-Star Game but since that didn’t happen this year, my chance to perform is right here.

S: What if you win and people find out you were using this game to train?

D: I won’t tell them I was playing the game.

If Deron wins, do we have another spygate on our hands? We’ll see. He’s predicting Dwyane Wade as the winner tonight, which would make it three years in a row. Taking the pressure off himself, playing the underdog card. Nice move. I asked a question that came out as “So, no Larry Bird everybody else is playing for second place trash talk from you?” He just stared and said no. This was focused, intensive training. Best of luck tonight, Deron.

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  • j rich

    chris paul’s gonna win the skills challenge.

  • Captain America

    Good luck Deron. I’ll be watchin.

  • peteb80

    Dwade is too fat to win it again.

  • trick

    i heard that game is rubbish,

    dwade’s gonna win

  • Boing Dynasty

    NBA 2K8.

  • http://www.myspace.com/hemantsbeats what

    Bibby to ATL son! What!

  • http://slamonline.com Russ Bengtson

    Apparently CBooz chartered a plane and flew all the Jazz competitors (himself, Deron, Millsap and Brewer) to Nawlins on his own dime. Good deal.

  • namik

    yeah did that really happen? Why Atlanta of all places? And Sac is getting robbed. Atlanta should be top 5 in the East now.

  • http://slamonline.com Russ Bengtson

    Not sure why I just thought of this, but why aren’t all the Jazz players decked out in New Orleans Jazz gear for the weekend? And if there isn’t at least one good Pistol Pete tribue I’m gonna be pissed.

  • http://slamonline.com Russ Bengtson

    TRIBUTE, even. I’ll make a separate post on Bibby if my main man mutoni hasn’t already.

  • http://www.rubensborges.wordpress.com Rubens

    now I wish Deron wins it, just so he can scream “I’m deron Williams dammit!” on th interview

  • Captain America

    I wanta know why CBooz didn’t pick up our Slam peeps.

  • Glen

    What the hell are the Kings doing? And where is Lang, what does he think of this?

  • RV

    yeah its true, well it says they agreed to the trade, but not finalized yet

  • http://www.rubensborges.wordpress.com Rubens

    on the $ russ

  • http://slamonline.com Russ Bengtson

    Great, I switched over to TNT right at the end of the Pistol Pete feature, which happened around 6, 6:15. Someone better post it on YouTube.

  • http://www.another48minutes.blogspot.com Gerard Himself

    Deron won!

  • Pingback: L.O.N. » Blog Archive » Line Of The Night — 02/16/2008 — All-Star Saturday Edition NBA Basketball

  • jay from the philippines

    i agree with L.O.N. no question, Dwill’s got the skillz

  • jay from the philippines

    i agree with L.O.N. no question, Dwill’s got the skillz

  • walid

    hey deron wath is your ps3 tag