grady reynods became the first player ever to win both, the slam dunk contest and mvp of the polish all-star game. after stints argentina, iceland and israel, the red storm alum is taking the first polish league (DBE) by storm: cleaning boards, abusing rims and killing opponents with nasty rejections. and guess what… he’s doin’ in the k1x strictly business.

our man in poland michi beta talked to gr after the slam dunk contest….

Team: Polonia Warsaw, Poland
Position: Forward
Height: 6’6’’ (196 cm)
Born: 1980-02-26
Birthplace: Abbeville, Alabama (USA)
College: St. John’s, New York
2007 Polish League All-Star Game MVP
2007 Polish League Slam Dunk Contest Champion
Stats per game: 16 pts, 8.5 rebs, 2 blks, 2 stls, 55% from the field

What are your expectations for the rest of this season?
As a team we lost our chance to reach playoffs, so I would say that keeping the first division. And when it comes to the individual… I don’t care about stats. I just wanna play to win. That’s what I do.

What would you like to achieve next season? Where would you like to play?
For that question it’s too early right now.

But if you could choose right now.
I woulda say Spain. To be on a good team, make playoffs and play for a championship. That would be the best thing.

What do you plan to do on summer?
Playing and just workout. Work on my jumpshot and one-on-one stuff.

What is your basketball dream?
Every basketball player’s dream is make it to the NBA. That’s my dream.

Do you think you can reach the NBA at this point of your career?
Not right now. Maybe in year or two.

What’s your favorite basketball moment until now?
My favorite moment… Well it had to be our win in NIT championships (Ed. National Invitation Tournament, New York, 2003 – St. John’s vs. Georgetown 70:67). That’s got to be the one up to now… cause that’s the only championship I won… the biggest one.

Whats your vertical?
They measured it in college. i forgot. It was like 35 inches.

Have you trained your leap using the special programmes like jumpsoles?
No, I didn’t train it using anything like that.

How old and tall were you when you made your first dunk?
Oh, maybe 15 years old, 10th grade I think. I was like 6’2”.

And what’s your best dunk?
360-arm-in-the-rim, that’s the best one.

How can you describe your game? What are your strengths and weaknesses?
I’m a great athlete, great defender, great rebounder, that plays both ends. I call them basketball players, who can do some of everything. Weakness, I will have to say, my pull up jumper.

What basketball means to you?
Basketball is my life.

Who’s your favorite player?
My favorite player in the NBA woulda be Steve Nash.

And who was your favorite player when you were a kid?
It gotta be Grant Hill. Of course Michael was everybody’s favorite player but Grant Hill was tough.

What can you say about the Polish League?
Polish League is ok. I’m not a very experienced player and I haven’t played in a lot of leagues… but it’s really physical. It’s a good league.

How do you find our country?
Poland is good. Warsaw is a nice city. You have some nice people here. Pretty much Americanized I guess.

I heard that you met Ron Artest. What would you tell him about Poland?
Wow. What would I tell Ron about Poland? Look better in your rearview mirror when you’re leaving (laughs). Nah, Poland is pretty good. I won’t tell him anything about basketball cause now he’s in the NBA. But I would tell him it’s a nice place. He might come here when he ain’t got nothing to do. It’s not a best place in the world and not the worst place in the world. It’s a nice country.

Who do you think is the best local and foreign player in our league?
You have a lot of good players. Andrzej Pluta is good, Wojciech Szawarski is good, Robert Witka is good… But I don’t know which one is the best Polish player. I really don’t know. Nobody stands enough over all. To me… I think Przemek Frasunkiewicz is the best right now. And from the foreign players…

Otis Hill? Tony Akins? Dean Oliver?
I would say I’m the best foreign player over here(laughs). I play on both ends of the floor. Yeah, that’s a no brain (laughs).

You have played in the Entertainers Basketball Classic at Rucker Park, the most famous 5-on-5 streetball tournament. What can you say about it?
It’s a lot of tricks out there but they do play serious. It’s a tough place to play. But I don’t like all the tricks and stuff. I like to play organized basketball. I played out there when I was in college back in 2003. It was nice to go and see everybody. You know, the players and celebrities coming out there.

Did you play against the NBA players over there?
Smush Parker was one of them. Amare and Bron came out there but they didn’t play.

Do the NBA players play hard in Rucker?
Some of them play hard out there and some of them don’t. Someone could get hurt. You know Ron Artest he plays hard out there but I haven’t played against him.

We recently hooked you on k1x, what dou you think?
They got some really nice stuff. My teammates keep on asking me about it and we’re waiting for the new collection.

One of the K1X mottos is: “You can’t teach heart”. How do you get to these words?
Yeah, It sounds good. It’s something that you earn back in the days playing on the playgrounds. “You gonna roll it over or you gonna play, you gonna take a challenge or you ain’t”.


see grady reynolds do his thing here:

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