I’m not a Celtics fan…I just call it like I see it. What everyone has witnessed throughout this playoff run is a team who are coming into their own. The Celtics are in the doorstep of becoming the team to beat for years to come. From top to bottom, the formula for success is already in place. Danny Ainge sets the tone as the GM, making and creating deals that best suit the long term success of the franchise. Brad Stevens and his coaching staff are some of the best minds in basketball. The roster is talent-laden, from the starters to the reserves. This team is destined for the Finals sooner than later.
Terry Rozier is one of the key ingredients to the overall success of the season. Not only did he play well and lead as a point guard should, he did so after perennial All-Star Kyrie Irving when down with an injury. The saying is that players have a next-man-up mentality, and while that sounds like the right thing to say and do…it is rarely executed as well as Rozier directed the C’s to the seventh game of the Conference Finals.
To understand Scary Terry, you must first realize that he is cut from a different cloth, forged out of pain, and struggle. Pressure makes diamonds and he has emerged from the rough and made the most of his circumstances. He has been counted out and second guessed as a basketball player on numerous occasions, at several different levels, however he continues to prove the people who have believed in him right.
Rozier is a lot like the team he plays for—young, tough, and full of promise. He has his work cut out for him during the offseason, but Rozier is no stranger to hard work or adversity. This man has been working for everything he has gotten since day one, and he has no plans on slowing down anytime soon. I had an opportunity to speak with him and the intensity he shows on the court, continues to boil inside of him hours after the game has ended. He is very down-to-Earth, and very approachable, but I got the sense that he is not satisfied and he possesses a drive and hunger that can only develop from very difficult times.
Everyone says that you’ve come out of no where, but you didn’t. Can you talk about growing up and where you come from in Ohio and being on this stage
Right, right. I’ll just say that’s why I’m not big on people that are just now paying attention to what’s going on. I don’t really care for them. I’ve worked for everything I’ve got. I was never given nothing at any level and that’s why I deserve everything that I have now and it’s a blessing. This is only the beginning. This is my third year in the league and I have so much more to prove, and so much more to show.
When did it really hit you that you could be an NBA player?
Once I got to Hargrave Military Academy (Rozier’s high school, located in Chatham, Va.), IYou know being on a military base is different, and it helped me focus. I was playing on a high level so at that point on, I knew that I could make a push at it.
Being away from home really helps your focus.
Yeah. Sometimes they would take our cell phones. It’s a military base so they watch everything we do. It was something different, something that I wasn’t used to. It was good for me though.
Who did you look up to when you were younger?
Dwyane Wade, Allen Iverson.
What was it about their game?
Fearless, entertaining—things like that.
Everybody is riding the wave with Scary Terry and everybody love you now, but you’re not paying it any mind. Does it feel good or do you not let yourself get to that point?
No, I mean, I don’t get too high, I don’t get too low. I mess with who I mess with, so that’ll never change. I love my support, I love my fans. Don’t get that confused…I don’t like people that jump on bandwagons, that’s all.
Did people count you out in high school and college?
No, I just worked for everything. I didn’t get the recognition, but I worked for everything and that’s been the story of my life.
What would you say to a young kid who is not getting that recognition, who thinks it’s not going to happen for him or her?
Umm…make it happen. Recognition especially at a young age…it’s nothing. It doesn’t stop your dreams, so keep pushing. Because no matter what the recognition is…the [competition] is never as good as they say and never as bad as they say, so just keep pushing.