Andrea Bargnani, 6-10, F, Benetton Treviso (Italy)
Selected No. 1 overall by the Toronto Raptors
Q: You are the first Italian player to be picked this high in the draft. As the first potential "Great Italian player" do you feel the need to be a leader for your fellow countrymen to follow, like Vlade has been for Serbia, and Arvydas for Lithuania? Does it add pressure to be the first?
--Jim, Flint, Michigan
Bargnani: "Of course there is pressure, but it's not a problem. It's a good problem. I'm very happy to be going to Toronto. It's a perfect situation for me as a player. It's a very young team. I am very proud to represent my country."
Q: Why exactly is it that you wear the number eleven? Does it have something to do with your love for Arvydas Sabonis as a boyhood idol?
--Roberto, Toronto, Ontario
Bargnani: "No, no. I wear No. 11 because for me it's a nice number. When I went to Benetton Treviso, the No. 7 which I wore before wasn't available, so I took 11."
LaMarcus Aldridge, 6-11, F, Texas
Selected No. 2 overall by the Chicago Bulls and traded to Portland
Q: What is it like to know you are going to be playing in the NBA? What do you do prior to a game? And last when you were younger did you really think you would play professional basketball?
--Jesse, Brookline, MA
Aldridge: Right now I'm really excited just to be in the NBA family, and to finally make my dreams come true. I am just looking forward to play. Before the games, I get focused, and think about what I have to do – just to do my job. When I was younger, I sucked, so I really didn't think I'd be here. It was a big dream out there, and went and it got.
Q: If you recieve this and send back it would be the highlight of my life. I would just like to ask you if any teams have given hints to you about whether they will draft you or not?
--John, Dallas, Texas
Aldridge: "Portland said they loved me, and if I was there, they'd take me, and that's where I am going, so I guess it worked out. I've been given one of the highlights of my life so I'll give you one of the highlights of your life."
Brandon Roy, 6-6, F, Washington
Selected No. 6 overall by the Minnesota Timberwolves and traded to Portland
Q: Now that the NBA has raised the age requirement to enter the Draft, how does going to college help you and what advantages does it give you over younger players who left out of high school?
--Lukas, Oshkosh, WI
Roy: "Hopefully it gives me maturity. Hopefully it gives me a little more discipline. For four years you are under the thumb of the coach. You have to do everything he says. Sometimes – in the NBA – you have coaches where you make more than them, and you lose that discipline. But I'm a hard worker. That's something I developed I by being in college for four years."
Q: In the NCAA you were by far one of the most underrated players. Now in the Draft you are highly regarded. Do you now feel you are getting that respect you want?
--Jarraa, Toronto, Ontario
Roy: "I definitely feel like I am now getting my due. Sometimes you don't get the credit you deserve when you expect it but it pays off for you in the future, and it's definitely paying off for me now."
Randy Foye, 6-3, G, Villanova
Selected No. 7 overall by the Boston Celtics and traded to Minnesota via Portland
Q: Do you feel like you can be a point guard in the nba while maintaining your number one asset in my mind, your scoring capability?
--Josh, Aurora, Ontario
Foye: "I think I can most definitely be as aggressive playing the point guard. It's just knowing when to take shots, and knowing when to be aggressive and try to take the game over and make plays."
Rudy Gay, 6-9, F, UConn
Selected No. 8 overall by the Houston Rockets
Q: Being one of the top players in the Draft, what does it feel like going to a team that you know doesn't have a winning record and is coming off of a rough season? What is your mindset going into the franchise?
--Mat, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Gay: "It's pretty good for me because I can come in and show immediately what I can do. I definitely want to make the team better, and I am going to do what I can to do so."
Q: After two seasons of college ball, do you feel that you have the experience to succeed in the NBA?
--Ralph, Toronto, Ontario
Gay: "Definitely, by all means. I think my game suits the NBA game. We will see how I do, and I'm going to work my hardest to do the best."
JJ Redick, 6-4, G, Duke
Selected No. 11 overall by the Orlando Magic
Q: Many people think you are under-sized for the modern NBA two-guard position. As a two-player myself I just want to know what you think of these comments. What can you do to improve during your stay with your NBA team?
--Kyle, Ottawa, Ontario
Redick: "I don't think my size is an issue. I measured 6-4 without shoes and 6-5 with shoes, with is reasonable for an NBA two-guard. I think I'll have to improve my ball-handling and my strength for the NBA."
Q: How has your experiences at Duke University prepared you for the challenges that are ahead in the NBA?
--Matthew, Muscle Shoals, AL
Redick: "I played there four years, so I had a lot of time to mature as a player and a person. During that time, coach helped me grow mentally to be a great player and a leader. He let me know when I didn't rise to the challenge."
Hilton Armstrong, 6-11, F/C, UConn
Selected No. 12 overall by the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets
Q: I was a big fan of yours while you were at UConn. What do u think you need to work at the most in your game to make it NBA ready? You and I know you can hit that 15 foot jumper!
Armstrong: "I still need to work on everything. Basketball – especially in the NBA – is not just one thing. You have to work on everything. Mostly defense and a lot of offense. Not too many people know me for my offense, but I'm going to work on that a little more. I definitely like the dirty work. I'm just a hard-worker. Shot-blocking just comes naturally – if I see it, I'm going to react to it.