Selected as reserve, Tony Parker
, a native of France, will appear in the All-Star Game for the first time. Parker averages 19.7 points, 3.8 rebounds and 5.9 assists per game for the defending NBA champion San Antonio Spurs. During All-Star Weekend, the Spurs guard will also appear at various events including FedEx Global Village at Jam Session.
Will the All-Star Game be fun for you ?
- Leon, Paris
Tony Parker (Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE/Getty)
Parker: I’m really looking forward to the game. I’m going to try to enjoy it and throw up Alley Oops to Shawn Marion and Kobe.
How did coach Popovich react to you being selected. Will he be harder on you after this?
- Dion ice78, Paris
Parker: He was very happy for me and very proud. He’s still going to be tough on me and shout but he’s happy for me. He was like Tim, kept saying how I’d earnt it and that I’d worked hard.
Are you going to be by Eva Longoria’s side during the celebrity game ?
- Dion ice78, Paris
Parker: I’ll go and see her but I don’t want to distract her. She asked me if I wanted to play and I said no way! But I am going to go and see her coach, that should be fun.
Don’t you feel under pressure playing with all these top players ?
- Maggie, Nice
Parker: Of course but it will be nice not to have Popovich shouting at me!
What does it feel like being the first french player to play in the All-Star Game ?
- Nicolas, Rillieux la pape
Parker: I’m very proud. It’s great being the first, it’s like that you make history. I always try and represent France as well as I can in the US. I work hard as I know there are a lot of people in France who get up late at night and watch me on TV so I try not to disappoint them.
Do you think this All-Star selection is going to change you ?
- Rémy Mateu, Ouveillan
Parker: Yes. I already feel people look at me differently. It gives you a new status so you have to assume that. Players will come harder at me and the other guards will want to play well. Like me when I arrived at the NBA and I saw Gary Payton and Jason Kidd, I wanted to play well against them. It’s going to be the same for the other players.
Will Boris Diaw be an All-Star ?
- Richard Morel, Nantes
Parker: That’s a tough one. This is the first season that he’s been playing well. But he’s had a great season. But to get to All-Star level that’s another story. You have to see how he progresses and how he’ll adapt next year. I believe he has the talent but in the West it’s tough.
What did Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili say to you about being at All-Star?
- Florent Doulon, Bois d’Arcy
Parker: Tim was very happy and very proud. He kept telling me that I’d earnt it. And Manu was the same. Next year we have to all try and make it together.