A few months ago, the Toronto Raptors held its annual Raptors Charity Gala Event called “Raptors Social“. It’s an opportunity for Raptorsfans to meet & greet their favourite Raptors players in an off-court setting. Raptorsfans purchase the tickets and all net proceeds of the evening benefit the MLSE Foundation & the Regent Park Athletic Grounds project. For this year’s Raptors Social, the event was held at Muzik Nightclub. This event is always a BIG hit because the fans got to meet the entire Raptors roster all under the same roof and some lucky ones even get a drink or two prepared by their favourite players. That’s because some of the Raptors players such as Terrence Ross and Kyle Lowry (just to name a few) stood behind the bar counter, serving and mingling with the fans. It was a great evening for a great cause.
During the media session at this event, I got an opportunity to interview my favourite Raptors of all-time, Morris Peterson (MoPete), it was my second time interviewing MoPete. I still recalled the year before, when I interviewed MoPete, my legs were shaking. I had never got nervous interviewing anyone before but with my idol, MoPete, that was another story. This time, for MoVernie interviewing MoPete 2.0, I was more calm.
Check out my interview conversation with MoPete below:
MoVernie: “MoPete, do you recognize me?” (me with a chuckle)
MoPete: “Ya man! Wait, no no….How are you doing man?” as MoPete playfully inspect my fedora to act if he isn’t sure if he recognizes me.
MoVernie: “Ha! Ha! Good to see you man! This is MoVernie on the MOVE. Beside me is my idol, MoPete, as always. Last time, I don’t know if you remember, my legs were shaking, but this time I feel alot better. But nice to see you again.”
MoPete: “Thank you! Nice to see you again! You dressed pretty well tonight.”
MoVernie: “You are the same Mo!”
MoPete: “Thank you. Thank you.”
MoVernie: “You know, this year is the 20th Anniversary, they showed alot of highlights about you, like the miracle shot, now seeing the purple coming back, what’s it feels like being part of the 20th Anniversary?”
MoPete: “It feels good. Coz this organization has done alot for the city and being 20 years shows resilience, I have been to lots of ups and involves in lots of downs, this city keeps fighting man. And for 20 years, it’s special. There are a lot of guys that came through this organization over the years, like we look at a guy like Muggsy, Al and Antonio, those guys showed me the way, showed me how to be a professional”
MoVernie: “So, what kind of message do you tell the younger players on the roster?”
MoPete: “Well..I just tell them to stay focused and stay ready because in this league, it’s all about opportunity, it’s all about minutes and earning playing time and that’s what I try to encourage.”
MoVernie: “You have a lot of highlights but what was the highlight that really stick to your mind?”
MoPete: “One of my highlights was when I met you last year man”
MoVernie: “Wow! MoPete man, that’s amazing!”
MoVernie: “Well…tonight is for Raptorfans donating for Regent Park and charity, what type of message do you want to give to the Raptorsfans?”
MoPete: “The Raptorsfans, well, I think this charity is good, you know, what we are trying to do is build courts around the city because basketball is big here, there are a lot of draft picks, a lot of people really watch basketball and part of that is, help building communities, have these parks available, so they can play basketball and achieve their goals.
MoVernie: “Last question, my mom is a big fan of MoPete as well, she wants to know. Hey!, what is he doing right now after basketball?”
MoPete: “MoPete is here chilling with MoVernie. Hey mom! How’s everything? Your son dress nice and look cooler than me. But it’s ok.” (MoPete with a smile)
MoVernie: “I always see you coming back to Toronto, doing alot of things.”
MoPete: “Oh! Definitely! Toronto is my home, it’s my second home. I look forward coming back, the people always show me a lot of love and respect. I think they respect the blue collar work ethic. And I told people that Toronto reminds me of Michigan. First of all, the people are great, they have the joy and the passion of what they do and they stick together. And that’s the big thing, sticking together through the good times and the bad times. I tell you what, this team is playing awesome this year, they have matured, they are feeding off the energy from the city. I think they got a taste from last year with the playoffs and now you can see it in their eyes that they are actually come ready to play at the beginning of the season.
MoVernie: “Thank you man! MoPete & MoVernie interview 2.0. Thank you!”
MoPete: “Thanks Mo!”
I would like to thank MoPete for his valuable time and thank you the MLSE TeamUp Foundation for the interview opportunity during the Raptors Social.
Did you know? MLSE 2015 Players’ Gala is happening this coming Sunday, March 29th at Real Sports Bar & Grill? Due to popular demand, tickets for this gala are SOLD OUT! However, if you want to donate for a good cause, you can still do so by clicking this link.
Follow me on Instagram (@RealMoVernie) and Twitter (@MoVernie) for more awesome pictures and videos on my MoVernie Journey!