Red Devil, Blue Devil, Made it to the NBA Level

posted Dec 11, 2017, 7:54 AM by Ryan Allison   [ updated Dec 11, 2017, 9:16 AM ]

Interview with Elton Brand

Recently, I had a once in a lifetime opportunity to interview an athlete who until he retired from the NBA last year, was a household name. Elton went from Red Devil at Peekskill High, to Blue Devil at Duke, to a 17-year notable career in the NBA. The thrill of sitting in front of Elton Brand (the number one draft pick in 1999) and asking him questions about his basketball journey is a feeling that, for a kid who follows the careers of accomplished athletes across basketball, football, and baseball, is completely indescribable.

The day before Thanksgiving I received a text from Elton Brand wanting to speak with Weston. Later, Brand facetimed me from the 76er game with Reddick in the background making a basket. For a 13-year-old kid from Atascadero this seemed like a dream. I hope all of you that have taken the time to watch my video interview with Elton, will come away from that knowing what a gracious, humble, kind, athletically talented, and thoughtful individual that he is. Elton brand is a rare breed of professional athletes.

Elton had a lot of respect for his mom, Daisy. Sadly, Elton lost his mom a few years ago. In talking with Elton, I hear how much he loved her in his responses. Daisy raised Elton with respect for the value of an education. Daisy raised Elton to never feel like, no matter your station in life, that you are above others. Elton, I think you have made your mom proud. You were academically successful and you realized your dream in the NBA through hard work, dedication, and commitment. You never forgot where you came from, or who raised you. But, most of all, you are continuing Daisy’s work in your community and beyond- in my community. There is no doubt, she was smiling when you reached out to make my dream come true. I will never forget Thanksgiving 2017-ever.

What you didn’t hear when the recorder was turned off was that Elton Brand is proud of me and when the 76ers are on the West Coast we will meet up. We will keep in touch and Elton will forever be a friend of mine. I know that if I was 13 back in 1999 I would have owned an Elton Brand jersey and worn #42 with pride!

Weston Hooten

Kid Sports Reporter