Does anyone love basketball more than James Mooney?

Mooney at the 2016 National Tournament in Las Vegas

Mooney at the 2016 National Tournament in Las Vegas

Q: What is your favorite Ultimate Hoops memory? 

A: It’s not an actual playing moment for me, but growing up a huge Duke fan, seeing Corey Maggette play in our National Tournament this past year was really something special. What impressed me most was how he was still in phenomenal shape even though he retired from the NBA in 2013. Effortlessly, he was just hauling down rebounds, blocking shots, knocking down 3’s, but then would turn it up whenever the game got close. It was just really cool to watch. 

Corey Maggette drives to the basket at May's National Tournament

Corey Maggette drives to the basket at May's National Tournament

Q: Who in your league is the hardest player to guard?

A: He hasn’t played in our league for a couple of seasons due to health issues, but Steve Serwatka was definitely the hardest player to guard in our Westchester league. He has such incredible range that you have to guard him out by half court, but then he’s deceptively quick and has a great head fake that he can just go by you.

Q: Who in your league has the best shoe game?

A: He was our former LC in Westchester, Marquis Standard. This guy had shoes for days and the socks to go along with it. Every time I saw him, he had a fresh pair of kicks on. His shoe and sock game was definitely top notch.

Q: If you could only watch three television shows, what would they be?

A:Inside the NBA, Power, Better Call Saul, but if we’re talking about shows that have ended then Breaking Bad would for sure be included.  

Q: Fill in the blank… Kevin Durant going to the Warriors is ________.

A: Interesting

Q: What is your favorite thing to do away from the basketball court?

A: By far, it’s spending time with my daughter. But other than that, I really enjoy listening to books through Audible and podcasts. I listen to JJ Redick’s The Vertical podcasts regularly and I’m almost done listening to Shoe Dog by Phil Knight. 

Q: Your best basketball friend is who?

A: Antione Johnson. He’s also our UH trainer in Westchester, but I met AJ like 10 years ago from playing against each other in a NYSC league. We respected each other’s games and when we got to talking, we shared the same exact views on basketball. 

Q: Your pre-game playlist must include which artist?

A: DMX. No other artist could combine hard core lyrics with a hard core beat like DMX did. NOBODY.

Q: Your favorite quote is what?

A: “Build your own dreams, or someone else will hire you to build theirs."

Q: Your city is the nation’s best basketball city because…..

A: It’s NYC. Do I really have to explain why? The birth place of point guards, elite scorers, and street ball legends. Frank Sinatra wasn’t lying when he sang, “If I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere.”