Know-A-Net: Chris Douglas-Roberts
September 22, 2008
by Ben Couch -- NJNETS.COM
East Rutherford, NJ — Chris Douglas-Roberts is a laid-back dude – off-the-court. He’ll gamely field all queries, rolling out answers loaded with potential for followup questions, upon which he’s also willing to expound.
But when it comes to discussing basketball, there’s a steel-edged confidence that creeps in to Douglas-Roberts’ sentences and his tone. Not cockiness, but self-assurance born of proven ability. The rookie swingman from Memphis finished his junior season as a First-Team All-American and the Conference USA Player of the Year. He averaged 18.1 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.2 steals in 40 games for the NCAA runner-up, and did it efficiently, shooting .541 from the floor and .413 from three.
Drafted in June by the New Jersey Nets with the 10th pick of second round (No. 40 overall), CDR caught up with us after a recent workout. It’s time to Know a Net!
NJNets.com: What’s your first basketball memory?
Chris Douglas-Roberts: I don’t know how old I was – I had to be in the single digits – but I hung a wire hanger up on the door, then ball up a sock and shoot it. I was real young. That was my first basketball experience.
NJNets.com: Who most encouraged you as a basketball player?
CDR: My brother. My mother, too. They’ve always been behind me, whatever I wanted to do.
NJNets.com: What player did you most admire growing up?
CDR: Growing up, I liked Steve Smith. He’s from Detroit, so I tried to model my game on Steve Smith.
NJNets.com: What element of his game would you most like to have?
CDR: Probably his jump shot. I’ve got the trash talking and all that down.
NJNets.com: When was your first dunk?
CDR: 13 years old. I was 6-2 or 6-3, going into ninth grade summer. It was just on the side, nothing serious.
NJNets.com: Did you know it was coming?
CDR: Nah, nobody does. Whenever they say their first dunk, nobody knows. It’s just an adrenaline thing – everybody’s on the side dunking, and you just happen to do it. Ever since then, I’ve been trying to dunk all the time. Now, I’ve gotten away from it a little bit, but I can get up when I want. I can get up when I want, man.
NJNets.com: So if the League comes calling around February, what happens?
CDR: Dunk contest? No. No no no no no no no no. I can’t do that one. I can’t do that one.
NJNets.com: What’s the biggest shot you’ve ever hit?
CDR: Man, I made a bunch of game-winners. What’s the biggest one? Probably in college, the UAB one. Or … I hit one against Gonzaga, too. Probably the UAB one, the and-one.
NJNets.com: Can you practice for those moments?
CDR: Nah nah nah nah nah. You just have to have that heart in you, you have to really want the ball. You can’t be nervous, you can’t be scared. It has to be in you. You can’t teach it or practice it.
NJNets.com: What kicks are you going to wear this season?
CDR: Nikes, man. I’m a Nike guy. I don’t know which ones (I’ll wear).
NJNets.com: What’s your favorite pair?
CDR: Right, now? Probably the Jason Kidd’s. … It’s ironic, ha.
.NJNets.com: You notice if anyone on the team’s a big shoe guy?
CDR: I know I am. I’ve always been like that, man. I’ve always cared about having a new pair of shoes on. Ever since I can remember.
NJNets.com: So what’s the prized pair in the CDR collection?
CDR: I take a lot of pride in my Pradas, man. My Pradas. The boots. Those are my favorite.
NJNets.com: What’s your gameday routine? Any superstitions?
CDR: I just nap up until it’s time to get to the gym. I must get the nap in – I’m very upset if that gets interrupted. No superstitions. I don’t really believe in that.
NJNets.com: What’s the best way to relax after a game?
CDR: It’s hard, because you’re real wired after a game. But I just try to sit down. It depends – I’m really not used to losing at all, so I really didn’t have to watch a lot of tape. But when we did lose, I sat back and watched some tape. After wins, I just kick back and enjoy the win.
NJNets.com: What’s your favorite food?
CDR: Macaroni and cheese and yams, mixture. You’ve got to mix them up.
NJNets.com: So you dig that Memphis barbecue?
CDR: I’m not really a barbecue guy, but I like smothered pork chops, smothered chicken, meatloaf and stuff. I’m a real soul food guy; I’m from Detroit – you can’t help that. I like Maggie’s (Irish Bar and Restaurant). It’s in North Jersey, and that’s my favorite right now.
NJNets.com: What movies have you watched most often? TV shows?
CDR: I’m not a movie guy. Not at all. I don’t remember the last time I went to a movie theater.
NJNets.com: Do you play NBA video games?
CDR: No. Not a video game guy at all.
NJNets.com: Do you play any fantasy sports?
NJNets.com: You majored in sports and leisure management -- any ideas about what you’d like to pursue after your basketball career?
CDR: I always see myself in the sports world, somehow, after my career. But now that I think about it, I should’ve been broadcasting or something like that, because I can see myself as one of those commentator guys after the game. I could see myself doing that.
NJNets.com: Nice. So who’s the best player-turned-broadcaster?
CDR: Jalen (Rose)! De-troit. Yes, sir.
NJNets.com: Word. He’s been good.
CDR: Yeah. He’s real good at that.