This season, Basketball Insiders is rolling out a new interview series called Pick and Pop. The goal is for readers to get know the players on their favorite team a bit more.
As opposed to typically serious ‘Xs and Os’ questions, these queries will be of a more personal, off-the-court nature.
On Saturday, we sat down with New York Knicks rookie Marshall Plumlee at Madison Square Garden. Plumlee, like his two brothers Miles and Mason who also play in the NBA, spent his college years at Duke. He went undrafted in the 2016 draft, but signed on with New York to play for the Knicks in the Las Vegas Summer League. On July 7, he signed a three-year contract with New York.
Without further ado, here’s our Pick and Pop interview with Marshall Plumlee:
Q: Who was your favorite NBA player growing up?
Plumlee: I really liked David Robinson. I appreciated everything he did on and off the court. I also liked Kevin Garnett and now I’m a Joakim Noah fan just because they are guys I try to emulate with their energy and enthusiasm.
Q: What would you be doing if you weren’t in the NBA?
Plumlee: If I wasn’t in the NBA, I would be serving active duty in the United States Army. Right now I get to serve in the reserve capacities and I love that. I also love programming and coding. And really anything to do with technology.
Q: Top three favorite movies of all time?
Plumlee: Hmmm, that’s a really good question… “The Matrix” is up there. “Patton” is my favorite movie of all-time, hands down. I’ll also put “Highlander” up there.
Q: Top three favorite musical artists of all time?
Plumlee: Johnny Cash. I really like J. Cole. If I had to pick one more, I would pick Bobby Darin. I really like Bobby Darin. (laughing) I listen to a lot of different stuff…
Q: What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Plumlee: “Life’s a marathon, not a sprint.”
Q: Who was your hero growing up?
Plumlee: There were a couple of people. My grandfather on my Dad’s side and I also liked General George Patton, because he reminded me so much of my grandfather.
Q: Best social media app? Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter; where are you at?
Plumlee: I like Instagram because I feel like it’s a unique way to give some insight to what you are like off the court. You can connect to your fans and do some really cool stuff with it. (Editor’s Note: Plumlee’s Instagram handle is: @MarshallPlumlee40 and he has been giving away tickets to Knicks games via contests on Instagram.)
Q: With this crazy climate of this election season, have you had to block any friends or family on social media because of their posts?
Plumlee: No. I’ve been all basketball mindset. It’s hard not to pay attention to the politics with the crazy climate right now, but I’ve really had the horse blinders on in terms of getting my basketball career started as a rookie.
Q: When did you first realize you had a good chance of playing in the NBA?
Plumlee: I think it’s something that I’ve taken one day at a time and try not to look too far ahead. Each year at Duke, I tried to be the best Duke player I could be that year. I knew if I just kept that mindset of being the best I can be every day, that one day I would be able to play at the highest level. It’s cool how it all worked out. To answer your question more specifically, going into my junior year… Well, actually that would have been my senior year because I redshirted my freshman season. I started feeling pretty confident I could play at the next level.
Q: What one thing is most responsible for you reaching the NBA?
Plumlee: I have to give a ton of credit to my family. My Mom and Dad gave me all the opportunities in the world to develop as a player and person. My brothers really blazed the trail for me and anytime I met an obstacle, I could pick their brain for advice. My Duke family with Coach K and how much he helped me grow as a player and person [was huge too]. Coach K actually helped me become more of a man.
Q: Most expensive thing you bought after signing your NBA contract?
Plumlee: I’ve been doing a good job of saving. I’ll say taxes; I’ve been paying a lot of taxes. So now I might have to start paying more attention to the political stuff now. No toys or anything yet.
Q: Well then, anything in mind after your rookie contract and you sign that $100-million dollar deal?
Plumlee: If I had all the money in the world, I would love to get a place in Asheville, North Carolina. That’s where I went to boarding school for high school. It’s beautiful and a nice change of scenery from the hustle and bustle of the city here.
Be sure to check back throughout the season for more Pick and Pop interviews!
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