Michael Redd’s All-Star Diary
Below is a day-by-day chronicle of Redd's All-Star Weekend.
Monday, Feb. 16
Now it's back to business. Michael Redd's All-Star Weekend officially wrapped-up on Monday night after the Bucks twilight practice. Despite some flight delays, Michael was able to make it back to Milwaukee in time to join his teammates at the end of practice. As Michael turns his focus to the Bucks second half, he shares his final thoughts about his first all-star experience:
What was your most memorable moment from All-Star?
"The whole experience was memorable for me. It was a great honor to be there with the best players in the world. To be able to play, and then to play like I did, it really makes me proud. To be able to get that shot at the end was truly a blessing. I was a little surprised, but I was on the bench and Coach just said `get in there Michael, we need a three'."
What was your biggest surprise?
"It was amazing, the whole weekend was just like I imagined it. It was electric."
What will you take from having been there?
"It was great getting to really know the guys, other than competitively. There was a lot of camaraderie. It was great to see Sam and Ray again as well."
Sunday, Feb. 15
It's finally All-Star Sunday. A crowd has gathered outside the Staples Center early and a red carpet has been rolled out for both movie stars and--the real stars of the weekend--the NBA All-Stars.
As Michael Redd walks down the hall for the team photo shoot in his blue All-Star uniform with his 11 teammates, his excitement shows.
"I'm really not nervous," said Redd. "But I am pretty excited. It's just like a pick up game, I'm going to have fun out there."
The team photo was one of the first things on the agenda for the All-Stars when they arrived at the arena. The 12 Eastern Conference All-Stars packed themselves in a room that would have had difficulty fitting an eighth grade All-Star team, much less a group of NBA All-Stars.
After the photos were taken, the East team had some time to relax in the lockerroom prior to game time. The atmosphere in the lockerroom was loose as the players joked with one another.
Redd's locker was situated between Vince Carter of the Toronto Raptors and Iverson. The East All-Stars had the Clippers lockerroom while the West All-Stars were next door in the Lakers lockerroom.
The media had one last shot at Redd and the other All-Stars for a period before the game. After the short interview session, Redd prepared himself for the game. He went out to the floor to take some shots. This wasn't like any ordinary game, however.
As he shot around, media surrounded the court. Celebrities like California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger milled around with the All-Stars. This was not a normal game by any means. Redd tried to keep it as normal as possible by sticking to some sort of a routine.
The player introductions had the glitz and glamour of Hollywood complete with a red carpet and the flash bulbs of cameras. Grammy award winners OutKast performed as Redd and his fellow All-Stars walked out. Nelly Furtado sang the Canadian national anthem while Christina Aguilera sang a beautiful rendition of the Star Spangled Banner.
Redd didn't see any action in the game until the second quarter, but when head coach Rick Carlisle called on him he was ready.
"I really didn't know how many minutes I would play," Redd said. "It really wasn't about that for me, I was happy with whatever was given to me. I tried to make the most with what I had."
Redd finished with 13 points and narrowly missed a shot with under ten seconds left that would have tied the game.
"I had a great look at that one," Redd said. "It didn't go in, it was pretty close though. Kevin Garnett was coming on me and that made it difficult. For me to be one of guys that Coach Carlisle called on in that situation means a lot to me."
Although the East lost the game today, the mood in the lockerroom was upbeat. Although they lost the chance at bragging rights until next year's game, the players knew that the game was for fun. Players sent their shoes, jerseys and basketballs around to each other for autographs and there were smiles, despite the loss.
Redd was impressed with how the guys were playing on the court during today's game.
"It was pretty intense out there the entire night," added Redd. "The guys didn't want to lose tonight. It was definitely competitive."
Reflecting on the weekend, Redd acknowledged that he couldn't have asked for more from his All-Star experience.
"This weekend was everything and more," said Redd. "I had a great time with my family, got a lot of rest and now I'm ready to go back to work."
He also said the relationship with other All-Stars that he made will always be something special to him.
"I have great memories from this weekend," Redd said. "This is something you dream about and wish you could do every year. It was great to meet these guys and hang out with them on a personal level, that is one thing I will definitely take back."
Redd also had this message for Bucks fans: "This had been a great time, thanks for your support and I'll be home soon ready to get a win on Tuesday."
All-Star notes: The NBA threw a post-game party at Universal Studios Hollywood Sunday night ... Celebrities at the All-Star Game were large in number, seen at game were Jack Nicklson, P. Diddy, Jay-Z, Kelly Clarkson, Star Jones, Robert Goulet, Kirstin Dunst and Vivica Fox.
Saturday, Feb. 14
Saturday is one of the more exciting days of All-Star Weekend. By this time, everyone is settled and ready for the action on the court to take place.
Michael Redd agreed with that.
"I'm anxious," he said. "I'm ready to play, this will be fun."
Michael Redd being interviewed by former NBA Star Mark Jackson.
Carmelo Anthony, Michael Redd and Damon Jones following All-Star Saturday Night.
Redd boarded the team bus for the All-Star practice at 9 a.m. A media session was scheduled for 10:30 and practice began at 11, but with traffic in Los Angeles, you can never be too sure.
The practice took place at NBA Jam Session, a theme park set up by the NBA at the Los Angeles Convention Center. At Jam Session, you can have your picture taken on a basketball card, practice your passing skills, shop for the latest NBA All-Star merchandise and, today, watch the All-Stars practice.
The vibe on the practice court before the players walked out was electric. The bleachers that held around 3,000 fans were packed. As the East All-Stars filed onto the court promptly at 10:30, the fans yelled for their favorite All-Stars.
The media was given exactly one half hour with the All-Stars, and the clock ticked down on the scoreboards on the court. More questions for Redd who, at this point, wanted to play basketball so bad, he spent most of his half hour of interviews with a ball in his hand.
Redd was interviewed again by Chris Ballard of Sports Illustrated and a number of international media, including a writer from Milwaukee Bucks teammate Toni Kukoc's home country of Croatia.
"We still love Toni back home," the man said.
"He is a funny guy, and he likes to pass," Redd said grinning.
The All-Stars will be wearing red, white and blue uniforms in this year's game. When you are in the All-Star game, you have to look your best and that all begins with your shoes. Redd wore the Nike Huarache '04 IDs in practice and plans on wearing them in the game. They were made just for him, personalized with his name and number.
The horn sounded at 11 a.m., signaling the end of the media session and the start of practice. After a short shootaround, head coach Rick Carlisle led the East All-Stars through some light drills and ran through a couple of plays.
The excitement of Saturday always continues with the events on Saturday night. Redd attended All-Star Saturday night and sat courtside with other NBA Stars. Redd, dressed casually in a Nike warm-up, sat for most of the night next to Carmelo Anthonyof the Denver Nuggets. Also seated courtside for Saturday's events was Milwaukee Bucks guard Damon Jones.
Redd was also seen during the dunk contest scoring one of Jason Richardson's dunks in the final a "10."
Redd enjoyed the events of Saturday night with his NBA family on the court, but planned on continuing to spend a lot of time with his family off the court.
"My parents are overwhelmed with a lot of this too," Redd said. "They are excited though, very happy and very proud of me. Last night we went out to dinner for seafood, it was great. They are having a great time, trying to soak this all in as well."
Redd couldn't help to express his excitement for Sunday's game.
"I'll have breakfast Sunday morning and get ready for the game tomorrow, I'm really excited. I don't know how much sleep I'll get tonight."
All-Star Notes: Saturday night's activities were full of celebrities: actor Will Smith, R&B star Usher, actor Leonardo DiCaprio, actress Vanessa Williams and rap star Bow Wow were among the stars in the crowd.
Friday, Feb. 13
The hotel lobby of the St. Regis in Century City was much different Friday than Thursday. Security was tighter as all of the All-Stars had arrived in town for the festivities.
Michael Redd arrived in the hotel lobby at 11:45 a.m. to start his day. Before it was off to more interviews, Redd had some catching up to do with former teammates and fellow All-Stars Sam Cassell and Ray Allen. Allen arrived last night following the Sonics game and Cassell was just arriving to the hotel. Redd, an avid golfer, was a little jealous of the fact Allen was able to fit a round of golf in early this morning. The two chatted about each other's golf games before Redd took off for his interview responsibilities.
Redd has been commenting so far this weekend about how Allen helped him get to the level of an All-Star and Allen later commented on Redd.
"It was almost like a heavyweight boxer," Allen said. "You take Mike Tyson, early in his career a lot of his sparring partners came back to fight him later in his career for a heavyweight title. Those sparring partners, you never knew them. That is similar to Michael Redd, he was my sparring partner for a couple of years, we went at it in practice everyday. He really learned a lot. He watched me do things. As a young player, that's the rhythm you need to have to go into a successful career. It took time, but he's an All-Star now, he learned and understood what it took to be successful by watching me and Sam and Glenn. That makes him appreciate where he is now."
Michael Redd with Baron Davis before the Friday photo shoot.
Michael Redd poses in his Bucks jersey during the interview circuit.
Redd's first stop was at the ABC television set where he was to shoot a promo for upcoming broadcasts. On the way over to that, Redd ran into another former Buck, Ervin Johnson who is now a teammate of Cassell's in Minnesota. Redd was in a hurry and didn't have time to talk for long, but promised Johnson the two would catch up sometime during the weekend. Johnson congratulated Redd on being named an All-Star before he walked away.
Redd arrived at the ABC set and quickly changed into his white Milwaukee Bucks uniform to tape a promo. After that, NBA Photos again took a number of photos of Redd. They used a large Polaroid Camera for these shots, allowing for a different look.
It was then off to a quick interview with Craig Sager of TNT. The two sat down for about five minutes and talked about much of what Redd had been asked all weekend: the strong first half of the Bucks season and Redd's first All-Star bid.
After a solid 45 minutes, Redd had 15 minutes to relax prior to the NBA Players meeting. Redd was able to sit down and relax before the rush of media later in the afternoon. He used that time to catch up with his dad who arrived in Los Angeles around 11:30 a.m.
The Players meeting was next and outside the ballroom in which the meeting was being held, a number of the All-Stars greeted one another. The meeting was the calm before the media storm that was about to begin.
The first media availability began at 1:30 p.m. and for an hour, media from all over the world had their chance to ask anything to the 24 NBA All-Stars. As the players filed out one by one into another large ballroom, they were each given a station where the media sat and interviewed the players.
Redd was the third one out of the meeting and sat down to his table which was next to Detroit's Ben Wallace. The first member of the media to greet Redd was Chris Ballard of Sports Illustrated. Ballard is writing a feature on Redd for the magazine and has been in touch with Redd throughout the weekend.
Although the media asked a number of different questions, Redd received inquiries that revolved mostly around basketball.
"I really wasn't asked any bizarre questions, but I was asked my favorite movie a couple times and I answered with `Coming to America. Its my favorite DVD, I'm into comedies."
There was a steady flow of media at Redd's table with affiliations from all over the world. Media members from Argentina, Mexico, Spain, Japan and Germany were all seen at Redd's table. In addition, local media from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel also paid Redd a visit.
"This is an unbelievable scene right now," Redd said. "This is crazy, and rightfully so, these are the best basketball players in the world."
At 2:30 p.m., the availability had ended and Redd's responsibilities were again complete.
All-Star Notes: Allen Iverson of the Philadelphia 76ers attended the media availability today wearing a Milwaukee Bucks throwback jersey and Milwaukee Bucks hat, Iverson sported the number 33 of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar ... Former Milwaukee Bucks Marques Johnson, Frank Brickowski and Abdul-Jabbar all attended the ceremony last night that honored Earvin "Magic" Johnson at the Shrine Auditorium ... Former Milwaukee Buck Mark Pope was seen shopping Rodeo Drive with his wife ... Also seen shopping Rodeo Drive were actor Jon Lovitz, chef Wolfgang Puck and actress Carmen Electra.
Thursday, Feb. 12
There are not many instances in Los Angeles when movie stars are outshined. When the NBA All-Stars roll into town, however, that all changes.
Michael Redd, the Milwaukee Bucks All-Star arrived in Los Angeles early Thursday afternoon after spending yesterday in his hometown of Columbus, Ohio.
"It's going to be a great weekend," said Redd, the first-time All-Star. "I'm looking forward to enjoying everything, but I also want to enjoy this with my family, girlfriend and other friends."
Redd was slowly introduced to the rigorous schedule of a NBA All-Star with today's NBA Entertainment circuit.
Redd was greeted in the lobby of his hotel by a NBA Entertainment film crew who immediately snapped a microphone on his shirt so they wouldn't miss a minute of the action. NBA Entertainment is shooting a documentary on the Bucks guard for NBA TV. The crew will follow Redd around for the entire weekend, chronicling his All-Star experience.
The tour of duty began with a NBA Entertainment Promo shoot where he sat down and answered some questions from a producer. Redd covered all topics ranging from the success of the Bucks during the first half of the season to his hard work ethic to his excitement about being named an All-Star.
The next stop on the circuit was the NBA TV interview. Here, Redd sat down and talked with NBA TV for about ten minutes and covered much of the same ground.
Redd went one-on-one with a reporter.
Redd posed for photos in L.A.
After the television side of things was done, it was time for Redd to put on his smile for the camera. NBA Photos had Redd in a variety of poses and had a studio set up like the set of a fashion magazine.
"Man, there were so many photo shoots," Redd said. "I thought it would be a little bit like this, but today I felt like a model. I have never seen this side of NBA All-Star Weekend before, this is a lot of work for just one weekend." Redd may have been mistaken for a model as he wore bright white Nikes, blue jeans and a fashionable blue and white striped shirt.
As Redd passed through one of the six photo stations, another Ohio basketball legend crossed his path, Cleveland Cavaliers rookie LeBron James. As the two passed each other they greeted one another with a hug and wished each other luck. James will be playing in Friday's Rookie Game.
Following an hour of work, Redd's official duties were complete. "My plans for tonight are to go to dinner with my family and just relax," Redd said. "My advice from Coach Porter before I left was to have fun, but he also warned me that its going to be a crazy weekend, so I need to relax when I can."
All-Star Notes: Earvin "Magic" Johnson will be honored Thursday night in a ceremony at the Shrine Auditorium, performing at the ceremony will be OutKast, Jessica Simpson and Earth, Wind and Fire. Redd mentioned in one of his interviews today that one of his favorite All-Star memories was watching the 1992 NBA All-Star Game, Johnson's last All-Star game and one where he went home with the MVP Trophy ... The weather today in Los Angeles was sunny and 70 ... Celebrity sightings included pop superstar Britney Spears shopping the trendy Melrose Ave. and exercise guru Richard Simmons.