Rodney Stuckey and Will Bynum Interview!

December 31, 2009

Walking into the locker room as the Detroit Pistons prepared to take on the New York Knicks on December 29, 2009, Pistons guard Will Bynum stands by the training room in conversation with a Pistons employee. Dressed in full practice gear, without any socks, I was shocked at how small he was. Of course, I’ve seen him before but usually it’s just a “Hey, what’s up?” kind of thing and I’m gone.

Not trying to interrupt his convo, I simply tap him and ask him could I have a word with him when he was done and he said, “Sure! I will come back there as soon as I’m done.”

As I waited for Bynum in the locker room, a few of the players (Austin Daye, Jason Maxiell and Jonas Jerebko) all studied film on the Knicks. The “We Are Young Money” album also blasted through the speakers giving me some sort of entertainment as I waited.

After about three minutes, Rodney Stuckey strolled through holding a pair of dapper red, white and blue adidas singing along to “Bedrock” as I caught up with him for a quick second…

Eric Woodyard: You’ve been putting up numbers this year. Do you think you have been shining so much because of all the injuries?
Rodney Stuckey: Uh, yeah. I know that once all those guys stepped out and got hurt that I just had to step my game up. We went on like a five-game winning streak but we’re kinda in a slump right now but once we get everybody healthy, we’ll be alright. I think if we go on a five-game winning streak then we’re right back in the fifth or sixth spot so we’re right there.

EW: I see that your jumper is looking a lot better, have you been putting more emphasis just on improving your jumper and do you think your numbers have improved because of that?
Stuckey: Yeah. I think hitting a couple of more jump shots is getting me a couple more points. (laughs as Will Bynum steps in the locker room)

EW: So everybody has been talking about yall two (Stuckey and Bynum) but how much do yall enjoy playing together?
Stuckey: Aw, I love this man. He’s cool and we just chill.

EW: The streets always debating on who’s better but we’re just happy to have yall both here…
Stuckey: I like his game, he’s a quick point guard, can get up, got boosties. He’s good!

Eric Woodyard: Thanks man! (transitions to Bynum)…First of all, I read a story on you in the Bounce Magazine and before that I didnt know that you were a streetball legend like that. So talk about playing in Chicago and how it used to be down there…
Will Bynum: You know I grew up in the city and kind of all around the city so everybody pretty much know me from basketball and I’ve been in like every neighborhood playing against the best player and whoever was their top player. I mean just all the time, just playing since I was five years old.

EW: So why do you think you have been able to bring that streetball game into the big stage?
Bynum: I think everybody got a little streetball in them and if they tell you dont than they probably lying. The top players definitely do. No matter if they from overseas or no matter where they from, they got it in their game. They’ve watched somebody who had it in their game, tried to imitate them or something like that and it’s the same with me.

EW: When you’re playing against the Knicks tonight…
Bynum: Nah, I aint playing (smiles)

EW: You aint playing tonight?
Bynum: Naw, I’m hurt…

EW: Aw, I thought you was playing tonight?
Bynum: Naw, I’m hurt…

EW: Oh, for real…
Bynum: Yeah…

EW: So what’s wrong with you now?
Bynum: For the past like three weeks, I been playing with a sprained right ankle and I sprained my left ankle in Philadelphia and now I got a bad bone bruise on the bottom of my left foot and I’m just trying to heal it and get back 100%.

EW: Is it pretty tough, because you was in your zone, to kind of get back in the groove that you was in earlier in the year?
Bynum: Yeah, it’s been tough playing hurt because people try to judge you while you’re hurt taking it not that you’re hurt because of the way you’re moving sometimes but it’s been a learning process. I’m definitely learning about it and now I gotta get myself healthy and get back to the way that I’m capable of playing.

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