Quotes from the top 10 draft picks of the 2020 NBA 2K League Draft delivered by Panera Bread.
No. 1 – John “JBM” Mascone (Wizards District Gaming)
Q. When were you notified by the Wizards that they were going to take you?
JOHN “JBM” MASCONE: It’s funny, like two minutes before, and the whole funny thing about this was it was a toss-up between about like three people. It was back and forth throughout the week. Honestly, if you asked me this an hour ago, I would have — I didn’t, and that’s what made it so much more surreal. I’m super grateful to be here. But to answer your question, two minutes before.
Q. I spoke to a couple of the veteran players in the league and asked their thoughts on you, and they said you’re fiery, good trash talker, very young. What does that mean to you?
JOHN “JBM” MASCONE: I mean, I’ll take it as it is. I think they see a little bit of vulnerability, and that is what it is, and I’m kind of here to prove them wrong. I’m definitely comfortable talking on the stage and getting my point across when it needs to get across to the other team, but I’m here to win, and that’s the goal.
Q. You talked about maybe how your personality meshes with Dayfri. How about on the court since you guys are going to be a duo now; how do you think you fit together?
JOHN “JBM” MASCONE: I think we’re going to fit well. I think personality is kind of the key component to developing that relationship, and I think that’s already there. I think the game play will come into its own, and having this much time to practice, I know how much he wants this, and I think we’re equal in that. I think any kinks we’ll get out in the first couple weeks of practice, and from there, who knows.
No. 2 – Christopher “Duck” Charles (Knicks Gaming)
Q. Again, being a home-town kid, playing for this kind of team, especially when you think about a couple years ago they made it to The Finals and won, seeing their development since then, what do you feel like you can add right away?
CHRISTOPHER “DUCK” CHARLES: I feel like me coming in as a point guard, I feel I can add leadership. I feel like sometimes last year the Knicks lacked leadership, and that’s what I bring to the table. I feel like that’s one of the main keys of importance that was happening this season. I feel like we can bring leadership, really just a sense of everybody being a family. I feel like that can really make us successful.
Q. When it comes to that kind of competition, being at the point guard spot, what do you think is the
most underrated aspect or aspect that is overlooked when it comes to being a point guard
and playing against other stellar point guards?
CHRISTOPHER “DUCK” CHARLES: Being able to stay composed. I feel like when you have the crowd chirping at you, when you have the other team chirping at you, sometimes there’s tension in the air. So being able to stay composed and keep on doing the right things, making sure that the coach’s vision is being put on the court, I feel like we can do that and be successful.
Q. What are the Knicks getting by having you on the team now?
CHRISTOPHER “DUCK” CHARLES: They’re getting leadership, a sense of brotherhood. Just creating a
family. I feel like that’s one of the most important things back from season one. I feel like GOOFY, Idris, I feel like all them were a family, so I want to create that sense again.
Q. I know it’s early, but what are the expectations for yourself and the team in season three?
CHRISTOPHER “DUCK” CHARLES: Expectations, obviously a championship. I want to bring a championship back to the city. I feel like we have the assets around us to be good, and I feel like bringing
me in we’ll be able to accomplish it.
No. 3 – Rafel “Crush” Davis (Kings Guard Gaming)
Q. We had the chance to speak with you, obviously stepping into this moment, anticipating where you can go. Now it’s official, you’re part of the league. How does it feel?
RAFEL “CRUSH” DAVIS: It feels amazing, man, just grinding all these years and knowing all your hard work is paying off finally, it’s a blessing.
Q. Crush, you’re a lock, selected third overall in a draft where everyone was talking about how deep the point guard pool was. What do you think that said about your own abilities?
RAFEL “CRUSH” DAVIS: I think that says I’m a game changer. My presence on the court, they feel it, and I just feel blessed to be in that opportunity. Yeah, so definitely me being on the card is definitely game changing, not only me just playing defense, but my communication, and just being a defensive and
offensive anchor sometimes on the court.
Q. What was going through your head when your name was called?
RAFEL “CRUSH” DAVIS: Man, I finally made it. These past years have been tough, not making it past the interview process the first season, season two not being in the combine. So season three was definitely a wake-up call for me. I put my all into it, 110 percent and just making it impossible for them not to pick me.
No. 4 – Eddy “BOHIO-” Perez (Pacers Gaming)
Q. Your thoughts on what you bring to the Pacers?
EDDY “BOHIO” PEREZ: I feel like I bring a really determined player that’s always willing to practice,
willing to get better and trying to win a championship. That’s the goal. I’m trying to be the best player in the league, and that’s my goal. Just a determined player. That’s what I bring to the Pacers Gaming.
Q. In the interview process with the Pacers, what did they tell you?
EDDY “BOHIO” PEREZ: I mean, Cody was telling me how he wants a guy that’s going to come in and lead his guys, how he wants a guy that’s going to — they’ve got a good coach over there. They want to read, they want to bond as a team, and I’m all for that. I’m happy to get paid to be a Pacer, 100 percent.
Q. How do you think you’ll mesh on the court with guys like Nate Kahl, WoLF, Swizurk?
EDDY “BOHIO” PEREZ: I feel like I mesh well because I’m a passing PG. I’ll get Swiz the ball because he’s a great shooter, and then WoLF and Nate, they’re more defenders that can spot up and shoot, and that’s my job, to get them the ball when they’re open and score the ball when they’re not. That’s my job.
Q. Is there one particular player you’re looking forward to playing against?
EDDY “BOHIO” PEREZ: I want to play against Bear just because I respect him and I want to beat him, but I respect him — it’s because I respect him that I want to play against him.
No. 5 – Dhwan “ShiftyKaii” White (Gen.G)
Q. You’re part of a pretty deep draft pool of point guards. It was kind of up in the air right up until the draft where everyone was going to go. Was Gen.G one of the teams you were expecting to go to?
DHWAN WHITE: Honestly, not really. I thought they weren’t going to take me. I was really surprised when they picked me. But the draft is full of surprises, honestly.
Q. Outside of the expansion draft, you are making history by being the first-ever regular season draft pick by Gen.G. How does that make you feel?
DHWAN WHITE: It’s an honor, obviously, for them to pick me, the first pick ever. It’s just an honor.
Q. What about off the court? What kind of a person is Gen.G getting?
DHWAN WHITE: They’re getting — I like to have fun. I’m a leader. They’re getting the whole package basically.
Q. Who are you looking forward to playing against?
DHWAN WHITE: Probably either the Warriors or the Heat because I used to play with KMT in pro-am, and two of my teammates — a lot of my teammates are on both those teams, so it’ll be fun to go against him.
No. 6 – Alex “Expose Him” Whelan (Hornets Venom GT)
Q. You are the first ever regular season pick of the expansion team Hornets Venom GT. What does that feel like?
ALEX “EXPOSE HIM” WHELAN: I feel like it’s really cool. They told me that they were going to maybe try to build the organization around me, and it’s really cool that they put that trust, and they kind of put me and Ty together to be the face of Hornets gaming, and it’s really cool.
Q. What kind of a person are the Hornets Venom getting off the court?
ALEX “EXPOSE HIM” WHELAN: Oh, off the court, you’re getting a fun, laid-back, easy-to-get-along-with guy, really chill personality. So I feel like we’re going to be able to get along really easily and we’re going to develop a chemistry pretty quickly and hopefully have a quick start to the season.
Q. What about on the court? What would you say is the strongest part of your game?
ALEX “EXPOSE HIM” WHELAN: I feel like I’m a really good leader. On the court I’m really good at controlling the pace of the game and situational basketball, and I feel like I’m good at controlling five guys to play as a unit, so I feel like that’s something I really excel at.
Q. What did you learn about yourself during the combine process?
ALEX “EXPOSE HIM” WHELAN: During the combine, last year going into it, I didn’t play as well as I wanted to, so this year I wanted to make sure I just 100 percent focused in, and I feel like I absolutely dominated the combine this year, put up some really good stats, and I felt really confident going into it and played well in it.
No. 7 – Sten “SAV” Valge-Saar (Lakers Gaming)
Q. You were picked by the Lakers; how do you feel about playing in such a big market such as LA and such a storied franchise?
STEN VALGE-SAAR: It’s crazy. It’s a great opportunity. I wasn’t really expecting to fall this far in the draft. I thought I was going to go to another team, but it’s awesome and probably even better I get to play in LA. I get to see that LA atmosphere, and I’m just ready for it.
Q. What kind of a person are the Lakers getting off the virtual court?
STEN VALGE-SAAR: I think a great leader. I have great leadership skills. I’m super dedicated and always working to get better.
Q. You mentioned you weren’t expecting to fall this far. Does that fuel you?
STEN VALGE-SAAR: Yeah, I just can’t wait to prove the other teams wrong. It really helps. I feel like I’m the most skilled player in this draft. Having other teams turn their heads on me, it just fuels me, sure.
Q. So the Lakers had a lot of point guard trouble last year. Do you think you can be a more steady presence for them?
STEN VALGE-SAAR: Yeah, I think I’m definitely the perfect person for them as a point guard, good scorer, good leader. I think we can really build something good there.
Q. When you heard your name called, what was the first thing that went through your head?
STEN VALGE-SAAR: Just that rush. It’s a great feeling just walking up on the stage, and everybody was kind of going crazy.
No. 8 – Glenn “Glennratty7688” Wilkerson (HEAT Check Gaming)
Q. When you look back at your path to the year, what would you tell them?
GLENN WILKERSON: I’d tell anybody listening, it’s tough to get here, but you’ve just got to keep pushing and you’ll get here eventually. Season one I got into the 250 and didn’t get to the second part, and season two I didn’t make it at all, and I feel like I should have got in last year, but I didn’t give up. I feel like not giving up is the key, especially with something like this, just got to keep working.
Q. The Heat have been looking for a point guard for really all three seasons. Do you think you could be their franchise point guard?
GLENN WILKERSON: I honestly didn’t expect to fall this far, so I think playing with somebody like Hotshot, the best center in the world, he was in the Finals season 1, he still was one of the top players last year and didn’t have a great season. I feel like this year putting me and Hotshot together, we’ll get the job done.
Q. What is the No. 1 emotion you’re feeling right now?
GLENN WILKERSON: I’m just blessed, honestly. Just blessed, happy. I told you, it’s a long journey, but ever since real basketball, getting injured and not being a top 150 player in the world in real-life basketball, so coming here and being one of the best 2K players in the world and finally achieving something, it’s a blessing.
Q. You’re wearing a locket with a picture of two people on it. Can you talk about who those people are and what they mean to you?
GLENN WILKERSON: On this side is my mom. She’s out there with me. She’s my rock. She helped me through everything. Every time I fell, she picked me up. Always keep her with me. That’s my grandma, she passed. She basically raised me. That’s my two ladies right here, so I just keep the women.
No. 9 – Josh “Choc DF” Humphries (Nets GC)
Q. How does it feel to just finally be here?
JOSH HUMPHRIES: I mean, it’s good. I knew if I stayed the course and just put my head down and did the right things that it would come back to reward me. It wasn’t — if you would have asked people after season one if I’d be here today, people would have looked at you like you were crazy. But I did the right things and I stayed out of trouble, like completely revamped my brand essentially, and obviously when it comes to Park, I did my thing with them and I’m looking forward to dominating this pro-am thing the same way I dominated Park.
Q. You did make an interesting switch from pro-am, you became a massive YouTuber. Was that a strategic move to get in the league or just something that you wanted to build your brand?
JOSH HUMPHRIES: No, again, I wanted — when I dropped out of college like with basketball, I wanted to find a way to do what I loved, and I loved playing 2K, I always loved playing 2K. I never was really a partier or anything like that. I played 2K, it kept me out of trouble. I knew if I want to Park, it would be an opportunity for me to make money playing the game. Once the Park thing went so well, I didn’t know I would finish so well because in years past it’s taken people way longer than it took me, so I was able to finish so fast, and it was like, oh, man, the combine is right here, why not do it. And that’s why I kept it on the low because I wasn’t sure where my head was at, but I missed competing. Park isn’t as competitive as pro-am, so I missed that competition, and that’s what made me want to hop in the league.
Q. You’re a very versatile player. What do you think your best fit is going to be with the Nets?
JOSH HUMPHRIES: I’m coming in, my goal is to play point guard, so I’m coming in, that’s what we talked about would be the best fit for me. A lot of teams would look at me and say, he’s not a point guard, that’s a 3 or a 4, but the thing about me, like you said, I’m very versatile. And we have a lot of time to scrimmage and get all that work in, and during the rep race for Park, now it’s all point guard. I put more hours into this game than anybody in this pool, so you’ll see it as soon as the league comes around.
Q. What’s the strongest part of your game as a point guard?
JOSH HUMPHRIES: I think it’s the ability to do whatever the defense gives me. There’s a lot of point guards that can only score, they can only pass. For me it’s like they’re giving me my shot and I’m going to take it, but if not, I’m going to find a way to get the right guy open, and I feel like because I play real basketball I’m able to see cuts more and see the right things. I think the ability to make whatever is starting to work is probably my strongest suit.
Q. What are you looking forward to about Brooklyn, New York, and living up here and also bringing your brand to the biggest market in the world?
JOSH HUMPHRIES: Yeah, I’m just excited. It’s a great city. Being able to work at Park Place is just insane, Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, all the stories. Brooklyn has really came up in the last couple years, so I’m ready to bring up the 2K version of it, so that’s what I’m really excited about.
No. 10 – Kimanni “Splashy” Ingram (Jazz Gaming)
Q. I think this draft has gone an interesting direction, so I’m sure maybe you weren’t always expecting to go to Utah. How do you feel about that right now?
KIMANNI INGRAM: Of course I wasn’t expecting it, but the draft is full of unpredictable movements. It’s like once you saw the first unpredictable pick, another unpredictable pick, and oh, now I have faith, I might be coming up next since we’re just doing a lot of unpredictable picks. I’m glad they have faith in me, and I’m ready to get started.
Q. Is there one particular player you’re looking forward to playing against?
KIMANNI INGRAM: First pick, JBM. He went first pick. You want to destroy the person who went before you, and he has the biggest media right now. I’m trying to destroy him as soon as I see him.
Q. Why did you pick him, other than trying to destroy him?
KIMANNI INGRAM: He’s off Xbox and I never got to play him this year. I got to play every PG in the pool that was like top 10, top 15 material, but I never got to play JBM, so I know it’s going to be an interesting match-up when I see him.
Q. You’re playing with last year’s first overall pick, Ria; you’re playing with the season one third overall pick, Compete. How do you think you mesh with those guys?
KIMANNI INGRAM: I know it’s going to be a great group. That’s why I’m worried about brotherhood before on-the-court stuff. I know we have enough skills, but if we can bond off the court, I know we’re going to be good. Ria is the most versatile player ever from what I’ve been told, Compete is great, Lotty is great. I know the next two picks we get are going to fit right back in.