Catching up with Arlington’s Pat Connaughton


“We haven’t played them in a while, and the rivalry isn’t necessarily as strong as it needs to be. They’re kicking our butt. But I love playing at TD Garden.”

Pat Connaughton wrapped up another season with the Bucks. Alex Brandon/AP Photo

Pat Connaughton has had an action-packed, life-changing few months.

In early May, he welcomed his son, Crew Connaughton, into the world.

A few weeks later, the Milwaukee Bucks guard and 2021 NBA champion Connaughton won the American Family Insurance Championship golf tournament. Connaughton teamed up with former professional golfer Andy North and supported UW Health while beating world-class swimmer Michael Phelps and former Boston College quarterback Matt Ryan.

In mid-June, he announced that the Pat Connaughton Foundation will donate $400,000 to aid in the demolition and rebuild of his hometown Fidelity House gym in Arlington.

This past week, he hosted the Pat Connaughton Foundation Summer Skills Camp at St. John’s Prep in Danvers. Connaughton interacted with campers like they were friends, signing paraphernalia, attempting jump shots from the balcony and joking with anyone he could find. caught up with Connaughton on Wednesday to discuss a variety of topics. What’s it like being a dad, and what does it mean to you?

Pat Connaughton: It’s awesome. I talked to a guy who covered us at Notre Dame, Tom Noie, for a Father’s Day thing. He had a great line for it – it was one of the few questions he’s asked me where I didn’t have an answer. Didn’t have the ability to spin it or elaborate on it. It’s a speechless type of experience. 

BDC: What’s it like balancing dad life and NBA life so far?

PC: It’s much easier in the offseason, especially these days, when he’s not sleeping through the night and that sort of stuff. It’s been a lot easier to balance. But obviously I’m still in the facility every day, while trying to enjoy it and spend as much time with him as I can, and balance my third job now, if you will, with the real estate company. It’s been a lot of fun.

BDC: It’s draft week. What do you remember about that night back in the day?

PC: I was up in Hampton, had a bunch of friends and family over. I was a second-round guy, and I wasn’t necessarily guaranteed to get drafted in any capacity. I did some good stuff on the draft workouts, so I had a pretty good inkling that I was going to get drafted by that time, which is why I had the friends and family gathering. It’s one of those surreal moments. I was fortunate, I went through it in baseball the year before, so I understood how the process went. It was a little bit different because it was a different sport. 

But Tyler Kolek, played for my AAU program, Middlesex Magic around here, played at Marquette. I’ve interacted with him a ton. He’s become a friend. I said to him last time I spoke to him, it doesn’t matter when it is. Forget about the projections. You either go in the first round, like you’re projected to do, or early in the second round. It’s not going to matter, because the second you get in the door, everyone’s back on the same playing surface. That’s what I learned really early on. If you get drafted, that doesn’t mean you’re going to make it. What you do from that night on is going to determine how long you play in the NBA.

BDC: What made the Celtics different this year in your eyes?

PC: They had unbelievable depth and unbelievable chemistry. I use this joke a lot. I’m happy for Jrue Holiday, I’m happy for Charles Lee, I’m happy for Blaine Mueller. Obviously everyone knows Jrue. Charles and Blaine came over as assistant coaches. Blaine headed up the Portland, Maine, team. Charles was the head assistant and is now going to Charlotte. I used to be a Celtics fan growing up. Now, I love the rivalry we kind of have built. We haven’t played them in a while, and the rivalry isn’t necessarily as strong as it needs to be. They’re kicking our butt. But I love playing at TD Garden. 

I love competing against them. I think they’re a tremendous team. They’re the best of the best. They finally pushed through to get that championship that Boston has been waiting to get. Not just in general, but before the Lakers got theirs. I’m really happy for Jrue. It couldn’t have happened to a better guy. He’s a dear friend of mine, and someone I’ll be friends with long after the basketball days are over. But I’m excited to see how we compete against them next year. I’m excited to use this offseason as motivation to try to get back. 

It hits home, obviously, hearing all my friends and family going to the parade, seeing all the things we were able to see three years ago. No one remembers three years ago. They remember this year. I’m excited for them, for those guys I mentioned, and I’m happy for the people I know within the organization. I’m excited to get on the floor against them next year.

BDC: What does Jrue Holiday mean to a team?

PC: He’s one of a kind, in my opinion. What he does for the community, how he carries himself, the professionalism, how he gives back to not just the community, but to rookies, how he leads them. He puts them in positions to understand the good, the bad, the fairytale dreamy, the ugly, whatever it is within the NBA. He tries to put them in a position to have success. He’s genuinely happy for his teammates when they succeed. He doesn’t care about statistics. He’s just trying to find ways to help the team win.

In the community, he really does a great job using his platform. That’s something I’ve always admired about him, even before he was one of my teammates, and then it was just magnified when he was. He’s a guy I was going to try to get back to the camp as well, but obviously he’s got the Olympics coming up. Give him a little family time out in L.A. He would have done it, too. That’s what says the most about him.

Source link


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *