On Wednesday, I got a chance to interview Hassan Whiteside following a workout in San Francisco. Whiteside is a very shy kid but shows an enthusiasm for the game that is not apparent in every bigman.

NBADraft.net: You’ve been working out with Hakeem Olajuwon, what kind of things has he been working on with you?

Hassan Whiteside: Defensively, foot work. Helping with my back to the basket. Really playing lower and stronger.

NBADraft.net: How much time have you spent with him?

Hassan Whiteside: For about a week. Doing one on one in Houston.

NBADraft.net: What made you decide to enter the draft this year?

Hassan Whiteside: My family, financially and the fact that my coaches left the school.

NBADraft.net: What was it like playing in Huntington, West Virginia (at Marshall)?

Hassan Whiteside: It was cold. it was a real quiet place. Not that many people. But they really support their basketball.  I don’t really party, so there wasn’t a whole lot to do there.

NBADraft.net: Did a potential lockout factor into your decision to turn pro?

Hassan Whiteside: Probably like 10%.

NBADraft.net: You went to Chicago recently for the combine, with the main idea being for the interviews. Talk a little bit about that process.

Hassan Whiteside: It was really fun. A lot of the GMs and scouts have great personalities, so it was a lot of fun talking to them.  It was a lot of interviews, like 8 or 9 in one day.

NBADraft.net: What kind of questions did they ask?

Hassan Whiteside: Just like stuff about my family. And about gaining weight. Stuff like that.

NBADraft.net: You got 12 reps on the bench press at 185 lbs. Did that surprise you or did you know you could do that?

Hassan Whiteside: I knew I could do that. I’m stronger than I look.

NBADraft.net: How do the workouts with Frank (Matrisciano) compare to workouts you have done before?

Hassan Whiteside: They’re a lot harder. He does a lot more outside stuff, working with weight bags. it’s hard work.

NBADraft.net: Talk a little bit about Daniel Orton.

Hassan Whiteside: He’s really physical. Uses his weight well. He can block shots.

NBADraft.net: Who do you compare yourself to? And what do you make of our Marcus Camby comparison for you?

Hassan Whiteside: Oh man! I don’t think I play anything like Marcus Camby.  I’d compare myself more to a shot blocking KG.

NBADraft.net: Best of luck to you in upcoming draft!



  1. People keep talking about his
    People keep talking about his attitude, but I’m beginning to wonder if it’s really that he’s pretty shy. He seems to have a decent head on his shoulders and he’s only 19. I love his answer to the Marcus Camby question. That answer shows me that he’s not listening to the media…. which is a good thing.

  2. Whiteside is 20
    Whitside is 20 and will be 21 in less than a month. But there is denying his potential, but for every Andrew Bynum, there are a Dozen Patrick O’Bryants.

  3. I see what Chad Ford meant about his cockiness..
    I’d rather have someone who’s confident in themselves than not, and I appreciate not getting the “I don’t play like anyone; I’m my own guy” generic answer, but comparing yourself to one of the best PF’s of all time, and essentially knocking his blocking ability? Really?

    I’m a bigger Whiteside fan than most, but his cockiness is really starting to annoy me. If he goes to a team with a hard nosed coach that can whip him into shape, he could be something special, but he doesn’t really seem to care.

  4. Cocky?
    People please get over yourselves. This guy is about to enter a league with the best player’s in the world. If he’s not confident in himself, who will be? Especially coming from not being heavily recruited out of high school to a small school like Marshall which is in basically a mid-major conference now, to being a likely lottery pick. I’d say he has everything reason to be cocky……that attitude may help him develop into a ‘shot blocking KG’. By the way he compared himself to the guy he didnt say he was on his level yet. If you have to compare yourself to someone why not someone great instead of a bum…..lol

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