Andre Iguodala has had a busy summer. Long, drawn out contract negotiations ended with a nice $80 million deal with the Sixers. His squad added Elton Brand and some other free agent pieces and now suddenly find themselves back in the mix in the Eastern Conference. We caught up with Andre for a few quick minutes to talk about his team, his summer workouts and getting robbed in the 2006 Dunk Contest…
Dime: As training camp approaches, how are you feeling about your game and the Sixers makeup in general?
Andre iguodala: I feel like when we’re winning and the way we finished off the season, I think I kind of proved myself and showed what I can do on the court taking the team to the playoffs. And we were expected to finish like last in the League period, and then getting in the playoffs was huge.
Whenever I’m on the court I feel we got the best team. This year I think we have great shot at getting deep into the playoffs. Now we’re just trying to get to the Finals. Like I said, I’m getting ready to play right now. I’ve been ready for months now. As soon as the season is over with I’m back in the gym just getting ready for next year. I think the team made a great move bringing in Elton Brand, I’m just getting ready to play getting ready for the season.
Dime: We always thought you were robbed in the 2006 All-Star Dunk Contest. What are your thoughts on it today?
AI: I forget about it until somebody reminds me, but I do get that question a lot. And it really didn’t bother me. I had fun with it, it was a good experience and the fans enjoyed it.
Dre’s work in the 2006 contest:
Dime: What was your best in-game dunk?
AI: I have no clue. I’ve had a couple of them. I had a dunk against Atlanta; it was an alley-oop. I kinda was jumping behind the backboard and I caught it, my head was behind the backboard. I don’t know, I’ve had a lot.
Dime: What are your summers like?
AI: I just live in the gym. I want to improve and get to that elite level, that elite status in the League and try to be an All-Star and try to improve in parts in my game. I want to raise my game defensively, get better shooting the ball and in general be more of a leader on the team. I pride myself of just trying to improve every year and being able to play every game.
Dime: Any vacation time this summer? Any trips?
AI: No I haven’t done too may trips. I’ve traveled a lot this summer as far as traveling around. I just make sure I get workouts in. I went to Vegas a few times, went to Miami a couple times. Played in Chicago with Shawn Marion this summer working out. Went to Atlanta once. I travel a lot, but I’m mainly in the States.
Dime: You’ve played for a lot of coaches in a relatively short career. What is it like to always be adjusting to new systems?
AI: For me it’s pretty much the same. I feel like every coach wants to win so they’re going to do their best. For me I just try to go out there and we’re all one family so its just one family so it’s just playing hard for any coach whoever I’m with. I feel like there’s no difference in each coach. Coach Olson was really tough on me, trying to get the best out of me, so that made me work a little harder. With Coach O’Brien, my job was to defend, so he wanted me to go out there and defend every night. He let me play as well, as far as letting me shoot the ball. So I feel like I got a lot from him as the far as the Pippen-aspect. With coach Cheeks, he’s pretty much laid back, so he lets me make mistakes and build my confidence as far as I can just go out there and play. I can just play without having to worry about if I do something wrong, I’m going to get pulled.