Beyond the Bylines: Getting to Know the Nothin’ But Nets Team

Nov 18, 2016; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Jeremy Lin (7) is seen on the floor during player introductions prior to action against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

 It’s Thanksgiving, so here’s a real treat for all of you: getting to know the Nothin’ But Nets team! Here are our author profiles from most of our writers.

Letter From Co-Expert Sandy

It’s Thanksgiving, so I guess I’ll start off by listing what I’m thankful for: the Brooklyn Nets, FanSided, and Nothin’ But Nets. I honestly didn’t know what to expect when I came to FanSided and Nothin’ But Nets in August, and it has been one heck of a journey. I’m thankful for getting the opportunity to run this wonderful site, our readers who sometimes drive me crazy in the comments section (I still love all of you), and being a part of the FanSided network.

Let me elaborate a bit on FanSided. Before FanSided, I never felt like I was part of a community. Sure, I have my school newspapers, but I’ve never seen so many like-minded individuals in one place before. Connecting with other experts on FanSided have led to some more great opportunities and friendships, which I am grateful for. I’m thankful for two experts in particular: Tamb and TJ, who both keep me grounded in times of crisis. Tamb, you’re like the older sister I never had (oops, I do have an older sister). TJ, you’re great sometimes.

When I started on NBN, I thought: what could be better than this — covering my hometown, favorite team for a beat, and getting paid to do it? Perhaps the only thing I love more than that is the NBN contributors. Many of them have been here since before I came, but it’s been fun watching everyone grow into the writers they are today. And I’d be lying if I said that I started off as a fantastic writer on the site, because I didn’t. Growth and improvement have taken form in all of us here.

The excitement that I had from my very first piece that got featured on Bleacher Report to any piece by any of our writers that gets picked up by B/R now has not faded. Ever since our huge offseason pickup rate by B/R, I’ve made it one of my goals to get every NBN contributor featured at least once on B/R. However, since the season started, B/R has been picking up less and less pieces. B/R, notice us please.

So since it’s the month of giving, I came up with the idea for this roundtable. All of our readers see our pieces and the writers just by their names and pictures, but there’s much more of a story to each of us than that.

Letter From Co-Expert TJ

I joined NBN in June, 2016, because I wanted to continue to branch out within the FanSided Network, and was ecstatic with the opportunity to cover the Brooklyn Nets. I learned quickly that, even though the Nets were coming off a tough 2015-16 season at the time I joined, there is a passionate community of fans who love their Nets and love the content we produce on NBN. This was both exciting and challenging for me. I like that people enjoy our content, and at the same time, it motivates me to always put my best work on the site.

I came to NBN after largely covering MLB and NFL since early 2014. I had covered the NBA previously, but joining NBN was an opportunity to expand not only my platform but my responsibilities. I embraced the opportunity to cover the Nets, and for the past four months, I’ve covered the Nets alongside our contributors. So far, it’s been such a fun ride. Since October, I’ve been working with Sandy as the site’s Co-Expert. Being a Co-Expert has given me an opportunity to collaborate even more with our great staff of contributors. Our team on NBN is always coming up with new ideas and angles on how we can cover the Nets from a unique perspective.

With this being Thanksgiving, I’d like to take this time to say that I’m thankful for FanSided giving me this opportunity, I’m thankful for Sandy, who is so talented and works so hard as a site expert, and I’m thankful for our contributors. Our contributors are fantastic. They’re always wiling to help out when needed, and they’re a joy to work with. Also, I’d be remiss if I didn’t give a shoutout to the Nets fans who read our work. We truly appreciate each of you who visit the site to check out our posts each day, and those that comment as well.

I love the idea of this round table because it gives us a chance to show that we have all a unique story. Happy Thanksgiving.

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Sandy Mui

Favorite NBA team: Brooklyn Nets

Favorite NBA player(s): Kevin Durant

Player(s) you want to meet: This list is extensive because I love so many players… Kevin Durant, Jamal Crawford, Devin Harris, Thaddeus Young, Sean Kilpatrick, Chris McCullough, Jason Kidd, Vince Carter, Richard Jefferson, and Damian Lillard.

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

I love telling this story. I’m probably the most athletically challenged person on this planet, which is why many people are shocked when they find out I’m a sports fan.

It all started in fourth grade. My elementary school gave out two tickets to a Nets game. This was in 2006, so the Nets were still in New Jersey. I couldn’t attend that game because of a family dinner that night, but I came home, turned on the television to watch NBA basketball the first time, and was immediately hooked. Since then, the Nets and shortly afterwards, the Knicks, have been my two favorite teams. It’s even better that the Nets are now in Brooklyn, my hometown. I’ve already attended four Nets games this season (the only Nets game I attended prior was a preseason game last year), and I realize how lucky I am for them to be here.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

I’ve actually only been writing for only a little more than a year. I’ve never been a huge fan of writing (and certainly never tried journalistic writing), but I was the bulletin editor of a club in high school, and wanted to continue something similar in college. The only club that interested me was the school newspaper. I immediately began covering sports, mostly because that was the subject that I was most comfortable in. Words flowed naturally for me, and I enjoyed covering sports. Fun fact: my first-ever NBA piece was about whether Tristan Thompson is worth $80 million (my answer: duh, no).

At the time, I was taking science classes because I considered pursuing a career in environmental chemistry. However, I realized that I enjoyed writing a lot more than this supposed goal of mine to save the planet, so I tried scientific writing for a couple of months before I realized that I only enjoyed covering sports. That’s when I knew this was what I wanted to do.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

Without a doubt, ‘Why We Shouldn’t Be Worried About the Nets’ Preseason Woes.’ This is the one piece I’m extremely proud of on Nothin’ But Nets. It took me all day to write, and I was extremely satisfied with the final product. The piece combines a bit of my personality, me as an observing fan, and me as a journalist.

Biggest Editor Pet Peeve: Already, on multiple occasions, WordPress randomly deletes the slides of some of our writers’ slideshows. It’s ridiculous. To recover the lost text, I have to go into the old revision to copy and paste the code into the text editor. This sometimes works for formatting and sometimes doesn’t.

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TJ Porreca

Favorite NBA team: Golden State Warriors

Favorite NBA player(s): Jason Richardson: #SlamDunkChampion

Player(s) you want to meet: Sean Kilpatrick

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

I’ve been watching the NBA and going to Warriors games since 2000-2001. As I got older, I developed more interest in the league as a whole, as opposed to just the Warriors. I’ve followed the NBA for much of my life, and it has become one of my favorite sports over the last 15 years. Now, I watch the NBA not just from a fan standpoint, but from a journalistic standpoint as well.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

I got started in sports journalism in 2013. I’ve always been a fan of multiple sports, and in 2013 when I started to think about which field I wanted to get into, I realized that sports journalism would be extremely fun. By being a sports journalist, I can combine my passion for sports with something else I truly enjoy, which is writing. I joined the FanSided Network earlier this year. Here on Nothin’ But Nets, I enjoy covering the Brooklyn Nets each day alongside my co-expert, Sandy, and the excellent contributors.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

Top 5 Point Guards in Nets History

Biggest Editor Pet Peeve: When I’m editing a slider and WordPress crashes. That makes me paranoid and stressed.

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Matthew Pisani

Favorite NBA team: My favorite team has always been and forever will be the Nets: Brooklyn, Meadowlands, or Newark.

Favorite NBA player(s): Jason Kidd

Player(s) you want to meet: If I could talk to any NBA player, past or present, it would be Jason Kidd. I want to know more about his career, life, and why the hell he ruined it coaching this team.

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

I got interested in NBA basketball around the fourth grade. My best friend was a die-hard Allen Iverson and Sixers fan. I always watched the Yankees on YES Network. I wanted to know more about basketball, so I started to watch a few Nets games here and there, and next thing you know, I am going to multiple games a year and rooting for the team every single night. I worshiped the Nets back then to the next level.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

I am one of the lucky ones. I have known I wanted to be a journalist since I was a little boy. My brother was one hell of a baseball player, and I was always the smarter one with an insane memory, especially for sports statistics and rules. My family always hoped that I could cover my brother in a World Series one day. Unfortunately, he is not in the majors, but I am still striving toward my goal of being a sports writer. After two years of post-grad work in finance, I realized I could not do that the rest of my life, so I am obtaining my Master’s in Sports Journalism and will be done by NBA Playoff time.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

I love writing any piece for Nothin’ But Nets, but my favorite sports piece was not actually published on any medium. I love my pieces for onthebanks.com, which is where I cover Rutgers football with several articles a week (check them out). I have given a lot of solid and fun work there.  I enjoy my roster and season prediction post I did for Brook-Lin.com, where I predicted the Nets will get 30 wins. But the piece I enjoy most was a final project for my Multimedia Reporting class. It was a piece on how if steroid users can get into the Hall-of-Fame, why is Pete Rose still under his ban? The piece includes interviews and a timeline and other multimedia aspects. If you enjoy baseball, check it out.

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Malcolm Ireland

Favorite NBA team: Brooklyn Nets

Favorite NBA player(s): Jason Kidd and Vince Carter

Player(s) you want to meet: Jason Kidd, Vince Carter, Tracy McGrady, Joe Johnson, Brandon Roy, and Jeff Van Gundy

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

I became interested in NBA basketball around the same time I started playing basketball. I would watch players on TV and try to imitate things they did when I played. The player I imitated the most was Vince Carter. He had some of the most acrobatic layups I’ve ever seen. To this day, I still try crazy layups like his, but I have a much lower success rate. Now, I just love watching the game because I understand it better than I ever had.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

I knew I loved sports journalism in high school. I knew I had a knack for knowing facts about the NBA and would talk to my friends and family constantly about it. My dad said I should do something with that knowledge, so I took a journalism class in my senior year of high school. I wrote for my school paper that year and when I graduated, I started my own blog. All of that lead to what I am doing now.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

My favorite piece that I wrote for NBN has to be ‘Is the Rivalry with the New York Knicks Legitimate?‘. I was just writing that article for fun before the Knicks played the Nets. As I was writing, I realized that it had a lot of facts that Knicks and Nets fans may not know. So I thought it would be fun to share those facts with fans.

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Sean Costello

Favorite NBA team: Brooklyn Nets (obviously I enjoy watching real New York basketball unlike another team I won’t mention)

Favorite NBA player(s): Definitely Kobe, grew up watching the Mamba but to be politically correct, I’ll go with a current player and say Aaron Gordon. There was something about him in college I was enamored with and as soon as he was drafted, I grabbed some gear.

Player(s) you want to meet: Definitely would like to meet Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, who seems like a fun guy. And of course Aaron Gordon, who’s my favorite player. Also maybe LeBron, one of the all-time greats.

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

I grew up a Nets fan. Getting to watch Jason Kidd and Vince Carter was a thing of beauty, especially when it’s hard for kids to usually sit through a full game of basketball. My mom was a lifelong Lakers fan, however, and once they traded away Kidd and Carter, I hopped on the bandwagon. But I got a nice varsity jacket styled Nets jacket for Christmas when I was 12 and being that i’m from Jersey, I was finally able to watch all 82 games. From there, I lived and died by Nets basketball and found a rejuvenated love for the sport of basketball and the NBA.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

Currently, I’m undecided. I would love to go into the acting industry as I’ve been editing and creating my own films since I was five years old, but I know I have multiple options as far as career choices go. I can go that route or possibly persue a career in broadcasting and journalism, which I wouldn’t mind doing either. I feel that either choice would be great for their own reasons. Acting would be great because I feel I have a very creative mind and can evoke much emotion out of people and can make great films. Or if I go the journalism and commentary route, I would love to be able to cover and attend sports events and be able to give my reaction to what’s happening on the floor, field, or ice.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

My favorite piece I’ve wrote for Nothin’ But Nets is probably my piece on the relationship of Lin and Atkinson or the chemistry of Lopez and Lin. Reason being is both are great pieces and really let you know about how chemistry and relationships can change a team, and we’ve seen that so far this season.

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Zach Cronin

Favorite NBA team: The Nets — shockingly. They’re at the top, but I’ll watch anything. Oklahoma City is up there because I love the passion and killer mentality that Russell Westbrook plays with. There’s also Minnesota because, let’s face it, their ultra-young core is super entertaining to watch. Also, the 76ers are another team. Who doesn’t like some Joel Embiid?

Favorite NBA player(s): Isaiah Thomas from the Boston Celtics. There’s only been one other player at his size (5-foot-9) who can dominate a game like him, and it was Calvin Murphy, who played for Houston from 1970-1983. Thomas is like a new-school Allen Iverson, but far less polarizing as an icon. His relentlessness for a short player isn’t seen in the league today, and I believe he’s one of the top-10 point guards in the association. He’s also left-handed, and I’m biased to players with the same handedness as me — lefties have to stick together, right?

Player(s) you want to meet: I don’t want this to sound like a cop out, but all of them. Each guy in the NBA has their own unique story. From LeBron James and Stephen Curry to Cheick Diallo and Spencer Hawes, no two guys have the same personality. Some are more vibrant than others — yes, I’m looking at you, J.R. Smith, now put your shirt back on.

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

Baseball got me into the NBA. When I was younger, probably around 2005-06, I was a huge Yankees fan, and the Yankees and Nets have shared the YES Network since the early 2000s. During baseball’s offseason, I watched basketball. The then-New Jersey Nets were actually a perennial playoff team, and it made everything easier to watch. As I got older and got more involved in the NBA and with basketball as a whole, I grew away from baseball and prioritized basketball as my number one sport.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

My interest in journalism came from my interest in writing, and it was when I was studying architecture at school. I hated that major. Me going to class was like stepping on 1,000 Legos while barefoot, and writing was what kept me from going insane. I didn’t have that epiphany until I was 18, which was about two years ago, and I shifted focus from architecture to journalism and writing. Since then, I’ve founded my own media/publishing company (TBN Media) and cover the NBA full-time there; I regularly contribute about the Nets for NBN and Elite Sports NY, where I’m also an editor.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

It’s between two: Top 5 Moments in Brooklyn Nets’ History and Sean Kilpatrick’s Rocky Road in the NBA. I love NBA history. It’s illustrious, to say the least, and the change the NBA has seen over time is scintillating. That’s why I like the former piece. I was able to dig through the Nets’ history and learn about the franchise.

For Kilpatrick’s piece, it was the story. When I write, I try to give the best story I can — after all; that’s what this art is about. Although Kilpatrick wrote his own story, I had a blast doing the research on it and highlighting each increment from his time at Cincinnati, to the D-League, and now as one of the Nets’ go-to guys.

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Christian Milcos

Favorite NBA team: Brooklyn Nets

Favorite NBA player(s): CJ McCollum: He is one of the smartest and most fun players to watch in the league. It’s always interesting to see a mid-major prospect hit it big in the NBA, as McCollum did coming out Lehigh. He is also a journalism nerd, similar to me!

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

I became interested in basketball after watching the Jason Kidd and Vince Carter-led New Jersey Nets compete against a young LeBron James in the 2007 NBA Playoffs. Seeing Jason Kidd glide the ball around the court and sink nearly impossible no-look reverse layups instantly had me hooked to NBA basketball.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

I plan on pursuing a degree in journalism after graduating high school this June. I first realized this was the career for me after becoming a staff writer for the sports section of my school newspaper. Sports journalism for me was a creative way to express my opinions on sports for a broad audience to see. After being elected Editor-in-Chief of my school newspaper as a junior, I immediately knew that journalism was my strength and passion.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

What Ever Happened to Richard Jefferson?

From the second I began doing research for this piece, I realized that it would be a fun article to write. Taking a trip down memory lane to some of the golden years of Nets basketball was enjoyable. Richard Jefferson is also one of the more respectable players in Nets history, which made this article a passionate tribute to a player who deserves it.

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Tyler Dencker

Favorite NBA team: Boston Celtics (sorry everyone)

Favorite NBA player(s): Ray Allen or Stephen Curry. I really can’t choose. To this day, I have a Ray Allen full-sized fathead and signed basketball in my room. But in the past few years, Curry has stolen my heart. If you couldn’t tell, there’s nothing I appreciate more than a great shooter.

Player(s) you want to meet: I feel like I have to say Curry based on how big a fan I am of his. Otherwise, I would love to meet either LeBron (so much respect for him, we will never see a player like him again), Allen Iverson (third favorite player of all-time, loved his personality and straight-up attitude), or Kobe (because he’s Kobe. Any other explanation necessary?).

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

It’s a funny story actually.

As a young kid, I didn’t pay as much attention to basketball as I did football and baseball. However, when I was about nine, I became increasingly interested in Ray Allen. At the time, he was dominating the game in a way that I related to and appreciated. Then that next year, he was traded to the Boston Celtics, so I decided to become a Celtics fan to follow him. Obviously, the Celtics were pretty good that season, as they ended up winning it all. As the season went on, I got pretty into it. I’ll never forget being an eleven-year-old kid and begging my parents to stay up late to watch all the playoff games. The roller-coaster of adrenaline I got while watching was too much to ever stop, and my passion for the game grew from there. Now, I’m as into basketball as I am into any sport, and I’m awkwardly a Celtics fan living in New Jersey.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

To be honest, I’m not sure what I want to do as a career. I was the sports editor for my high school newspaper, and I wrote in a personal sports blog before writing for Nothin’ But Nets, so I’ve always enjoyed doing sports journalism.

What I do know, however, is that I want to work in the world of sports one way or another. I feel my passion for sports is unmatched by anyone or anything. I could seriously talk or debate about sports forever. If you don’t believe me, check my Twitter. People probably love or hate me for that, but I embrace it.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

Tough question. Each article has its own uniqueness that makes it fun to write. If I had to pick one though, I’d say it was ranking the top 10 players in the NBA. Typically, I’m reading about rankings, and this was the first time I was responsible for creating one. That piece was something I put a lot of research and work into, and I was really proud of the finished product.

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Justin Witmondt

Favorite NBA team: Brooklyn Nets

Favorite NBA player(s): Vince Carter

Player(s) you want to meet: Vince Carter

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

Growing up just 20 minutes from both the IZOD Center and Prudential Center, I had an easy time getting to New Jersey Nets games. Earlier in my childhood, I was blessed with the opportunity to watch Vince Carter, Jason Kidd and Richard Jefferson dominate other teams. As time went on, things got worse for the Nets, but I continued to make the 20-minute trip to watch the Nets play.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

Though I love my Nets, I will always be a New York Giants fan first and foremost. I began my writing career at the age of 15 by opening a section on SportsBlog.com, where I wrote articles of my choice. After a few months of writing for my own section, I received a spot with a small fan-based site dedicated to the Giants. Soon after, I received a great opportunity with Scout Media to be a writer for their Giants section. Writing nearly 75 articles for Scout, it became clear to me that sports journalism is my true passion. Just a few weeks ago, I was offered a position to write for The Giants Wire of USA Today, where I currently write about anything and everything Giants-related. And of course, I am fortunate enough to be a member of this great site as a Nets writer.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

Though I have only written about 10 articles for NBN (having joined the site less than a month ago), my article about why Sean Kilpatrick will win the Sixth Man of the Year award is easily my favorite. As a Nets fan, I have enjoyed witnessing the emergence of Kilpatrick. Thus, writing an article on why he will win Sixth Man of the Year was quite enjoyable.

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Zachary Edward Knecht

Favorite NBA team: Brooklyn Nets

Favorite NBA player(s): Brandon Jennings

Player(s) you want to meet: Brandon Jennings, Brook Lopez, and Dwyane Wade

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

I started getting into the NBA, for one, just watching ESPN. I’d watch it for football and then gained a liking for basketball. I also started getting into it because when I was in cub scouts, we went to a Chicago Bulls-New Jersey Nets game that really sparked my interest.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

My career choice is still undecided. I do really enjoy journalism and covering sports because I love writing in general, and sports is my passion. I wish to find a career in sports because I just love every aspect of it. I would love coaching or being an analyst, or just anything in sports.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

My favorite piece to write was the takeaways from their road game against the Lakers earlier this month. I loved getting in-depth for the analysis.

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Darnell Gilet

Favorite NBA team: Chicago Bulls

Favorite NBA player(s): Aside from Michael Jordan, it would be Hakeem Olajuwon

Player(s) you want to meet: Michael Jordan

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

In 1992, prior to my grandfather moving back to Haiti, he would pick me up from the babysitter, we would pick up some Chinese food, and come back home to watch basketball. The first time I watched basketball was with him when the Bulls faced off against the Blazers in the finals. I did not know anything outside of the fact that the Chicago Bulls had a cooler name and jersey than the Portland Trail Blazers. It also just so happened that Michael Jordan was playing, and I was mesmerized. My grandfather would debate with me stating that Clyde Drexler was better than Jordan (as many falsely argue about other players even today). That was the inception of my love for the game.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

By day, I work in talent acquisition and diversity recruitment strategy. I began writing when I realized that a majority of my free time was spent debating sports with friends. Hours upon hours of conversation, lines upon lines of text messages. I figured it would be a more productive use of my time if I wrote my thoughts down on paper and shared them with the world.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

My favorite NBN piece is ‘The Nets Will Be the Kings of New York.’ Although there were others that I was proud of, this article made it to Bleacher Report, which is something I could not have imagined when I began writing.

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Max Prinz

Favorite NBA team: Brooklyn Nets

Favorite NBA player(s): Jason Kidd (retired) Draymond Green (current)

Player(s) you want to meet: Kent Bazemore

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

When I was in the second grade, my school had a book giveaway and I won a package that contained a basketball clipboard, a book of NBA plays for kids, and some kind of season preview book for kids. It profiled two players and gave all kinds of fun facts about each team. I was hooked almost immediately. I studied the players and histories of the different teams until that book fell apart. My NBA fandom has only escalated from there.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

We’ve all hit that point in our playing career where we realize we’re never going to play professionally. Still, I couldn’t give up the game even if I’d wanted to. So I began trying to think about it differently and started writing.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

My favorite story I’ve written was on the 90th anniversary of the Rose Hill Gym at my alma mater, Fordham University. Rose Hill is a unique place to watch a basketball game. It’s intimate without being cramped and as the oldest on-campus gym in the country, it has a history that is downright palpable.

Manan Modi

Favorite NBA team: Brooklyn Nets

Favorite NBA player(s): LeBron James

Player(s) you want to meet: LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Vince Carter, Russell Westbrook, Jeremy Lin, Damian Lillard

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

When my older brother first got an Xbox 360 and NBA 2K6, I was jealous that I wasn’t allowed to play, but it was primarily because I had no true knowledge (at age six) of basketball back then. I was always fascinated by the Nets and their trio of Kidd, Jefferson, and Carter. What truly got me into deeply analyzing basketball was probably the 2007-08 Celtics run, and I remember watching the entire playoffs series that year and falling in love with the game.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

I’m interested in a career revolving around social entrepreneurship and public service. In college, I hope to study business or economics with a quantitative focus, and I want to take on a second major of psychology or cognitive science (depends on the school). My goal is to understand people and analyze how human behavior affects us in both the short and long run. I’m currently a high school senior, so nothing is really set in stone for me yet. Afterwards, I’ll approach college with an open mindset and pursue a breadth of opportunities.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

Jeremy Lin Fits Perfectly With the Nets

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Charles Daye

Favorite NBA team: Brooklyn Nets

Favorite NBA player(s): LeBron James and Jason Kidd

Player(s) you want to meet: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

My dad took me to a New Jersey Nets game back in the 90s. I remember the lineup had Sam Cassell, Kendall Gill, and Jayson Williams. Mix that with how popular the Chicago Bulls and New York Knicks were, and I was hooked. I was so happy my jersey collection was Michael Jordan and Kendall Gill as a child.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

Between covering politics like council meetings and campaigns, who wouldn’t rather watch their favorite teams and report on that?

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

I don’t know if I really have a favorite piece; different writings have various personal meanings. It was cool interviewing UFC fighter Frankie Perez. Not only was it my first time interviewing an active professional athlete, but Frankie and I graduated high school together, so it was cool we had a chance to do something together on a  professional level.

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Kevin Castaneda

Favorite NBA team: Brooklyn Nets

Favorite NBA player(s)/Player(s) you want to meet: Michael Jordan, Russell Westbrook, and Kevin Garnett

How did you become interested in NBA basketball?

NBA basketball was always a passion of mine, believe it or not. As funny as this sounds, I started watching NBA basketball when I watched Like Mike. I’ve watched basketball since, and it quickly became my favorite sport. I love the unpredictability, ball movement, strategy, and art that is basketball.

If you’re pursuing sports journalism as a career, when did you realize this was what you wanted to do? If not, what is your career goal, and what drives you to cover sports?

I want to work in the public relations or social media team for the NBA, and that’s my goal. I like sports journalism a lot, but it is not my career goal.  Sports are so unpredictable; you never know what is going to happen, and that’s something that excites me.

What is your favorite piece you’ve written for NBN? If you haven’t been here long enough, what is your favorite piece you’ve written for any publication?

I have never written yet and I have never had my work published yet, but I’m here now in hopes of that!

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