Chat Transcript: Guard Delonte West

In only his second season in the NBA, Celtics point guard Delonte West has taken the helm of this young team and is making his presence felt across the league. As he makes a serious case to be included in the 2006 Rookie Challenge as a member of the Sophomore team.

West took time out after practice on Tuesday, January 24th to chat with fans about his season so far, the rest of the 2005-06 Celtics campaign, and what he enjoys doing when he is relaxing off the court.

Marc Della (Pepperell: Great season so far! but i was just wondering what you did in the offseason to improve your game so much, or was it more of a confidence thing for you?

Delonte West: It was a little bit of both. I did lots of work in the offseason, and now I'm more confident too. I work on all my weaknesses, and that in a way, helps my confidence.

David. NY: Hey Delonte I want to start off by saying that Ive been a fan of you since your days at St. Joes and think you and Jameer are gonna be superstars in the future. I would like to now what was it like guarding Allen Iverson in the triple overtime thriller?

Delonte West: Actually it was a pleasure. He is one of the guys I've been watching since I was in middle school and he was at Georgetown, because I was in DC. Then, when I went to St. Joe's, you couldn't help but watch Iverson and all he did for Philly. I just keep watching him and and now that I'm competing against him, I'm hoping that I can steal some of his moves.

Mario, Rochester NH: Delonte, you are currently leading all point guards in the blocked shots category. What do you attribute that to? Leaping ability, timing? Maybe you could give some shot blocking tips? Thanks a lot. Green 17

Delonte West: It has nothing to do with leaping ability, it's more about not letting anyone get easy buckets off you. Some guys give up on the play, but I won't. It's also tied to the concept of team defense. If a teammate forces a guy into a tough shot, you gotta get over there and help and try and block it too. You need to have the desire to keep guys from scoring on you, and that starts as a team, but continues with your own commitment.

Ray (Haverhill): Tell us about your tattoos! Who/What is "REDZ"?

Delonte West: I'm the only one in family who came out with red hair. My brother and sister both have black hair, so I came out with kinda fair skin and red hair, and that kinda stuck with me. People always called me "Red."

Colin(Regina): In the Rookie vs. Sophmore game, who do you think will get the start at point, you or Jameer Nelson?

Delonte West: Hopefully I will. (Laughing) Ha-ha. But Jameer is having a great year in Orlando and he's a great buddy of mine. Honestly, I just would be honored to participate and I'm not worried about starting. Jameer knows I have no problem being in the background either, I'll play Robin.

Jan/Whitinsville: Hi Delonte, Tommy and Mike mentioned you are an artist. Is there a web site where we can see your stuff? What kind of art are you into?

Delonte West: I'm into all kinds of art. I enjoy beautiful things and I like to create. My dad was a carpenter and I went along with him, and enjoyed working with wood, creating things. Soon, maybe this summer, I may get an art gallery going, where I can get my stuff up on display. I have a few things up on a few walls in St. Joe's and in some living rooms of friends, but I may expand on that.

Erin (Boston): Hey Delonte, I'm a season ticket holder and a big fan. Congrats on your amazing season so far. In your rookie diary you would always give fans your movie recommendations, and I was wondering if you've seen any good movies lately that us Celtics fans should check out?

Delonte West: I saw Hoodwinked, and I give it one thumb up, not two thumbs. Oh, Hostel, it's a little vulgar, but it's a good movie with a good plot to it. Those were the last two I seen. I'm gonna see Underworld 2 today, so look for my review in the future.

julian from brookline: hay Delonte, you plaied with gary payton last year what did he tell you about playing as a NBA point guard that has helped you this year as you take over that roll?

Delonte West: You kinda almost have to be the voice of reason out there. You have to be a bit of a tough guy with your teammates. Sometimes there may be some confusion out there and as the point guard, it's up to you to set the tempo and set the flow. I learned that from Gary, in practice and in games, and I'm trying to do that now for the Celtics.

Dan; Swampscott: yo D-west, i love your silky smooth shot. How do you mentally prepare for a game? And do you prepare any differently when your on the road?

Delonte West: No. Basketball is about rhythm and repetition so I try and do the same things. Same sleep patterns, same meals and same things that worked in the past to make you successful. You'd be surprised if you just let things flow naturally, in a an easy, comfortable way, how successful you can be.

robert (brisbane): who is the funniest celtic?

Delonte West: Ha-ha (Laughing) We have a team of funny guys. Out of 15 guys on our team, at least 14 of those guys had to be the class clown at their school! Everyone has their own personality, but even with the coaching staff, we have a real good chemistry with our team and in our lockeroom.

Ron Flanders (USS Tarawa, South China Sea): Delonte, How do you keep your confidence after losing so many close games late? Can the Celtics recover from a disappointing first half?

Delonte West: Well, there is two halves to everything. If we have a bad first half, we still get our gameplan together to go out in the second half and win. And that applies to the season. We haven't started well, we've lost some close games, but we have a lot of games to go and we can definitely turn it around. We have the talent and the desire, we just need to go out and execute on the court.

Delonte West: First of all, I'd like to thank the fans for supporting me. Especially the hometown fans from Washington DC and Philly who came out to see me, and of course our great fans here every night in Boston. I'd also like to thank God for putting me in this position where I can play in the NBA and have chats like these where I get to interact with my fans. And like I said after an earlier question, look out for the Celtics in the second half of the season.
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