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Martell Webster Chat Transcript: Nov. 3, 2005

Webster was Portland's first pick in the 2005 NBA Draft.
NBAE/Getty Images
Martell Webster joins the Portland Trail Blazers for the 2005-06 season as the third player straight from high school taken in consecutive NBA Drafts for the Trail Blazers. The 6-7, 210-pound guard joins Portland via Seattle Prep in Washington, where he was one of 10 finalists for the Naismith Award, an honor that goes to nation's top high school senior. He was also selected as a member of the 2005 McDonald's All-America team and the Parade Magazine All-America first team. Webster originally committed to play at the University of Washington before declaring for the 2005 NBA Draft where he was selected sixth overall.

As the sixth pick, Webster became the Trail Blazers' highest pick since they took Kentucky's Sam Bowie as the No. 2 selection in the 1984 Draft. Webster's biggest influence in his life has been Beulah Walker, his great aunt, who raised him from the time he was three years old. Webster has a sister, Chi Chi, a brother, Bobby, and is the cousin of Dallas Mavericks point guard Jason Terry. The rookie will turn 19 on December 4. Martell chatted live with fans on Thursday, Nov. 3. Check out the complete chat transcript below:

Michael (Portland): How come you didn't play last night? Are you hurt? Do you worry about getting hurt like you did in high school?

Martell Webster: No. Right now the coach is working on his rotation and I wasn't in that top ten. He told me to be patient and I'm doing that. I'm working hard to be patient and to be ready when I get the call. But, no, I'm not hurt.

connie, seattle: Are you happy that you were drafted by a team in the Pacific Northwest?

Martell Webster: Connie, I definitely am. It's great to be close to home and I was very happy about that.

John (Eugene): Are you going to miss not going to college and having the "college experience"?

Martell Webster: Definitely. But college is always an opportunity out there for me. One day, I can do that if I choose to. It might still happen.

Josh (Portland): Do you have any pregame rituals to prepare yourself mentally and/or physically for the pressure of playing such high-stakes games?

Martell Webster: No. I do the same thing I do everyday. I think about what I can do to help the team, offensively and defensively.

prodigy, long island: What do you expect your first season in the NBA to be like?

Martell Webster: Just to be a player who learns the game. I need to be patient and learn in practice and watch the games until my number is called and when it is, I need to be ready to go.

Jose (Portland): I always wondered if the players hear it when fans call to them.. Or do they block out the audience to focus on the game? When someone calls out your name (like GO WEBSTER!) do you notice? I'm just curious.. Thanks

Martell Webster: No. All I can hear is "Yo!" When I'm playing I concentrate on the game, not on what is being said. You can't be distracted.

goldstein, rome, italy: Who was your favorite player growing up?

Martell Webster: Michael Jordan. I loved watching him play. He is the one who inspired me to play basketball. Before that, I played mostly baseball and football.

Tom (Portland): Where are you excited to play? What city, what arena? Why?

Martell Webster: I'm excited to play everywhere or anywhere. It is not about any specific arena.

Lisa - Vancouver: Do you go back to Seattle a lot?

Martell Webster: I did, before the season started. But now we are playing I don't really get down there. I'm working in Portland, working on my game, getting faster, stronger and quicker.

Mike - NYC: What part of your game have you been working on?

Martell Webster: Defense. Position defense. My shooting ability is there, and getting my shots, but right now, it's my defense that I'm working on the most.

Rebecca E (Portland): What kind of music do you like?

Martell Webster: Hmm. R&B mostly. That is my music, right now.

Ryan (Portland): Which Vet has been killing you the most with Rookie Chours? Plus which Vet has taken you under their wing?

Martell Webster: Rube is the vet who has been a big part of the rookie stuff we have to do.

Bison, DC: What role do you think you will play for Portland? What position will you play?

Martell Webster: I want to play the 2. Everybody wants to be a star or a leader, but I know that will take time and hard work. I need to put in the work before I can establish myself in a specific role. It will take time...maybe years...but I want to be an elite athlete and I'm working toward that now.

joe, cleveland: Hey, which player do you look forward to playing against most in the NBA?

Martell Webster: Hmmmm. I don't know. For now, I just want to play! Against everybody. The most exciting guys to watch play are Tracy McGrady and Kobe.

randy, NYC: Who is your best friend on the Blazers?

Martell Webster: I don't really have a best friend on the Blazers. They are good people and I give them all respect. We are a team of friends.

stacey, LA: Do you think the Blazers have a shot at making the playoffs this season?

Martell Webster: I do. Every team has a shot, but it's about putting it all out there and doing your best every night. I have faith in my coaches and teammates and if we lock down our focus and work together I think we can make the playoffs.

Martell Webster: I want to thank the fans for chatting with me today, I really enjoyed it. It's great that I have your support and I appreciate it. Thank you very much.
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