It is one of the hottest days in Auckland and Basketball Yeti caught up with import signing Patrick Richard at Breakers HQ after training who has been steady contributor all season. More of late we are seeing Patrick really come in to his own with his calm but vocal presence on the court.
Off the court he is the wise mature one at the Breakers camp and loving being a part of the new Breakers group and wants to continue in the clubs successful way but knows the NBL is no joke and making playoffs is tough. The Basketball Yeti really likes the way Patrick Richard plays and is often involved in the effective offence and moving the ball. Last weeks video highlights Patrick Richards scored his first double-double in the win over Brisbane. I sat down with Patrick and asked him a few questions including would he want to return next season?
Basketball Yeti: SO here we are man, you’re probably the more experienced import in the league (Breakers) and last week you recorded your first double-double in the NBL how’d that feel?
Patrick Richard: Ahh good man, it felt good to you know, do some other things on the court to help the team, ah I try my hardest to rebound and just help, cause I know Brisbane is attacking the glass we were playing a lot of small ball, ah so you know I tried to help as much as I could on that end and I was able to knock down some shots too.
BY: Yeah and you know rebounding for your position as well show you’ve really put in the effort you know defensive end as well, you know through the NBL, obviously I’ve been watching everything (Being the Basketball yeti), you’ve been in there 22 minutes is your average, 11 points and your season just seems to be very consistent man, are you happy with your numbers this year?
PR: Ahh I always know I can do better, for sure, I can always be better, I mean I’ve had some games where I’ve been kinda off in the field but for me is about trying to be as much as I can and help the guys, you know be their vocal guy, be their vocal leader of the team, ah you know sometimes I have a big scoring night, sometimes I might not but just to stay locked in like that. These guys look to me for a guy they can talk to and keep them motivated throughout the game you know, to help us win games.
BY: And you know, you’re kind of known within the group as the, just like a bit of the ‘old head’, man; have you kind of always carried that with you or is it just in the Breakers camp?
PR: [laughs] OK yeah this is probably my second time, cause last year my team in Spain I was like the oldest guy we were super young, but I guess it’s my personality too man, like me being a family guy, I don’t really be ‘out and about’ too much, I’m with the wife and kids all the time and I’m like an old soul man so I guess that’s why they look at me like that; and I guess the way I carry myself too, you know maturity wise too so that’s probably it I guess, that’s why they think that.
BY: So far in the NBL man, who’ve you been matched up against that you’ve thought “Man! That was a good match up!”
PR: Aww man they’ve got a lot of good players in this league man, from I mean shoot, pretty much every team, they’ve got good players playing in my position for sure playing in the two and the three and sometimes in the point so I mean not anybody specific but I mean all the guards are tough, I mean especially…we’ve got Goulding and Weir and McCarron coming in, they’re all pretty tough. It will be tough but it’s fun, it’s good match ups to have, yeah.
BY: So there’s not like any week that you’ve gone, aw yeah, this week should be OK, it’s just the guard position is full on all the time?
PR: Yeah, nah heck no man, it’s just this whole league as a whole I mean every position man you notice more bottom teams being top teams, everybody is beating everybody, it’s so close so it just goes to show ahh you know from how top to bottom this league is.
BY: And there’s a question I’m asking, potentially me, I see you as that new CJ Bruton or you know even KB how he’s like kind of, he came [to New Zealand] and he tried it out and you know you’ve been here now for a little while with your family and stuff, what is your kind of message to the Club and the fans?
PR: I mean, thank you man for accepting me, accepting my family, accepting me as a person coming here and trying to you know build on the tradition that you’ve built, ah I love it here and if it’s a possibility you know that you guys want me back then I’ll come back too. I mean ah, its one of the best places if not the best place that I’ve been in all my years playing so ah, I wouldn’t be against you know, possibly coming back so.
BY: So basically if you get the phone call and Matt (Walsh – Skycity Breakers Owner) is like “Man, we’d love to have you back”, um you’d be like happy to do that? [laughs}
PR: [laughs] Yeah! It’s definitely a big chance cause like my family, my wife and kids they feel you know they’ve adjusted to here pretty good, like the weather, you know there’s a lot of positives you know so, right now, I’m focussing on now though, trying get these wins and get these playoffs cause anything can happen so.
BY: Absolutely and it’s kind of why we watch basketball is for the “impossible can happen”…and it does happen, you know you can be up 20 and lose so you know you can win 5 from 6.
PR: Yeah for sure I mean I, it goes to show you man this league is so even, I mean you drop one or two games in a row man, next thing you know, you’re fighting to even make the playoffs I mean so, like right now we’re just taking it one game at a time we’ve got the defending champs, I mean we’re not going to back down so, we’ve got em at home first, hopefully we can get that one and get up there and try and get one in their house too.
BY: Cause let’s be honest there’s nothing like winning on the road aye?
PR: [laughs] yeah for sure man, especially the crowds [in the NBL] they be talking to you crazy, talking spicy to you man but, it’s fun to kinda shut them up a little bit and get some wins or whatever.
BY: And Pat one last question, our home games that have been on the road, how’s that affected you physically kinda going that extra distance?
PR: I mean it’s tough you know physically mentally too, but the crowds have been great, all the places that we have gone, Invercargill, New Plymouth…and Hamilton, all the crowds have been great, I know it’s great for their communities to you know bring us in so it was great for them for sure, I mean for me physically it’s a little tough, but it is what it is, a part of the schedule and we’ve just got to try you know win every game that we can, so it doesn’t really matter where the game is I mean I know our fans here wish we were at Spark Arena for every home game of course [PR & BY laugh]…
BY: I think you’ll really enjoy the Wellington crowd…
PR: Oh yeah! I heard…
BY:…they really like Basketball there and you know probably Shea [Ili] and all of that talk quite highly of the contingency down there?
PR: Yeah no, you know I’ve heard great things about their city too Basketball wise so it should be fun going there too.
BY: Cool. Thanks! Rad man…
PR: Alright, Thanks brother, I appreciate you.
BY: Go ice up bro!
PR: [laughs] yeah! I need that!
[BY and PR laugh]
BY: Thanks Pat!
Patrick Richard Posts 16 points & 10 rebounds vs. Brisbane Bullets 27/01/19: