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November 18, 2020

James Wiseman

Bristol, Connecticut, USA

Q. Obviously you're very close to Penny, and you've acknowledged that. I'm wondering, has he given you any advice on how to be successful in this league or any advice on your journey going forward?

JAMES WISEMAN: Really just taking it one day at a time. I know it's going to be a long process for me, for my career, but I'm truly ready. I'm just going in there to try to learn as much as possible and stay humble and work hard every day and just win.

Q. Just want to talk about the excitement of joining Golden State. It's something that they've been connected to you for a long time throughout the process. What are you most looking forward to in terms of playing with Steph, and where do you see yourself fitting in with the team?

JAMES WISEMAN: Just being their guy. Come in there and learn as much as possible. Me coming in, great vets, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, you've got Draymond Green, Marquese Chriss, Kevon Looney, a lot of great guys on that team.

So me coming in, just fit in my role, stay humble and be coachable, which I am. Go in there and work hard, play hard.

Really like that fit and that position that I'm in. It's a great position for me, great fit for me. I'm just ready to go in there and play my role.

Q. Second pick, Golden State; what are your expectations for this season?

JAMES WISEMAN: Just to go in there and learn as much as possible and get better every day with my teammates. Go in there and work hard every day and compete and win games.

For all athletes, our main objective in sports, period, is to win games. Go in there and win, learn as much as possible and grow as a player.

Q. Is winning Rookie of the Year a goal for you, or are you focused on the team's success?

JAMES WISEMAN: I'm focused on success. I mean, Rookie of the Year is something that I do want on my list, obviously, but I just want to go in there and be the best player I can be. Learn as much as possible, grow as a player and learn under the vets and play my role, and everything will come after that.

Q. How does it feel knowing that you're about to get on the court and play basketball once again?

JAMES WISEMAN: Man, it's a great feeling. This draft process has been the longest for me, so I've just been working on my game. I've actually been playing pickup games with pros already, so I've been getting a lot of experience. But really just focusing on myself. I'm truly ready to play with these great guys.

You've got Steve Kerr as a head coach. Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, a lot of great players on this team. I can't wait to go in there and play my role as a player.

Q. I'm sure you look at these guys, you've been a fan of these guys on the Golden State Warriors, but knowing you come into a team that's ready to compete for a championship already in your rookie year, what goes through your mind when you think about that?

JAMES WISEMAN: There is no pressure. I've been playing this game for a long time. I've been in winning traditions a lot, especially in Memphis East High School and college as well. I'm built for it, and I'm ready to go in there and learn and grow my game and just adapt.

Q. What do you think is going to make you effective on a team like the Warriors, who are aiming for a championship?

JAMES WISEMAN: Just being able to grow from the guys, learn from the guys. I'm great at adapting on a team, so I feel very comfortable with that. I'm ready for it. I'm preparing for it. I'm ready to go in there and play my position, play my role.

And just having great teammates around me that are going to teach me the game, that are going to help grow my game, I'm ready for that. I'm just prepared, fully prepared.

Q. I wanted to know what your thoughts are on how you've been able to sort of adapt during this pandemic where training and preparing for the draft has kind of been thrown askew and how you feel that bodes for your preparation heading into the season.

JAMES WISEMAN: It was very hard. It was a lot of adversity, but I just managed to focus on myself and keep working every day, keep working on my game. Staying humble. And watching tons of film -- even on the Golden State Warriors, watching a lot of film, watching film on teams, period, watching concepts.

Just being in college, having a coach like Penny Hardaway and Mike Miller, I was already in an NBA system, so I know a lot of details and concepts within the game.

This year has been hard, but I managed to focus on myself and keep working every day, staying humble.

Q. I'm curious if there's one thing about your game that fans don't know. We only saw you play three times in college, and everyone knows your size and wing span and ability to run the court. Is there anything not known about your game that you think will make an impact in the NBA?

JAMES WISEMAN: I'd say my versatility. Just being able to space the floor out and being able to knock down shots. Go in there and just being a high-character guy and uplifting my teammates every day, even in practice and in the game as well.

Being a high-character guy and a guy that loves to work hard. But I'm also a guy that can space out the floor and be able to shoot the ball, which I've been working on this past summer, and just my whole life been working on my jump shot. So it's gotten way better.

Q. How exactly did you get the news that you got selected by the Warriors and your emotions when you got that call? And when you think about what comes with joining and helps your career to join a group of veterans and not have to walk in and solve all the problems, what kind of a great thing is that?

JAMES WISEMAN: I mean, it's great in terms of my concept because I can be able to learn, be able to grow my game. Being able to adapt in that type of environment, which I can. And just going in there and learning, helping grow my game.

Why I busted out in tears is because I've been through a lot. I text my teammates every day in Memphis. I wanted that moment with my teammates. Just seeing all that, becoming like a downfall. Man, I would just have to bust out in tears because I've been through a lot of adversity in my life.

But I'm ready to go into Golden State with a great mindset, with a different mindset. Ready to go in there and learn as much as possible, grow my game and adapt and work my tail off.

Q. I've also heard names like David Robinson and Chris Bosh and Chris Webber. You're getting pretty high praise when you hear those comparisons. How do you feel about that?

JAMES WISEMAN: Great comparisons because those are great players, potential Hall of Famers or Hall of Famers. I mean, it's high praise, but I just want to create my own thing, be my own player. I'm James Wiseman, I'm myself, I'm authentic. So I'm just going to go in there again, grow and adapt and stay humble and work my tail off every day.

Q. How have you been processing the unfortunate news with Klay's injury, and where do you think you and the team go from here if there is a worst-case scenario with that next season?

JAMES WISEMAN: As soon as I saw it, it was kind of down for me emotionally. But as a team we've got his back no matter what, and he's going to be in great recovery.

And in terms of my perspective, I just can't wait to go in there and give my great contribution toward the team. Go in there and learn as much as possible, grow and adapt within that environment and play my position.

All praise be to Klay, my teammate. He's going to be just fine.

Q. Can you tell me if you have a relationship with any of your new teammates already? I know you participated in the Steph Curry elite camp when you were a high school prospect. Do you know any of them personally, and what do you think of the team that you saw last year and then obviously the five-year run that they had where they made the NBA Finals every year?

JAMES WISEMAN: Yeah, so I have a great relationship with Steph. Obviously, I went to his camp, so he taught me a lot. When I was in high school, he taught me a lot about the game of basketball, gave me a lot of information. I just took a picture with him. So that's my guy.

But really going into this team, it's a great team to be on, especially coming from my position. I'm ready to go in and grow and adapt and learn as much as possible under great vets. Work my tail off every day and stay humble and win and compete and give my full effort.

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