Box And One With Aaron Brooks

By Wesley Chism Jr.
Updated: February 10, 2008

SEATTLE — I sat and watched the Houston Rockets rookie Aaron Brooks for about 30 minutes shooting the ball and what was so amazing was that he did the exact same thing every time.

He plants hard on his left foot, slightly going to the right and you never really know if he’s going to drive to the basket, shoot or pass. What blew me away was that after he shoots the ball he lands perfectly about two shoe sizes from where he shot the ball.

“That’s one of the most important things about basketball, especially playing on this level and that’s being consistent day in and out”, Brooks said. That is what the coaching staff is expecting from me and wants to see that I’m continuing to work hard doing those little things to get better and being able to come off the bench and contribute.”

Aaron is always quick to acknowledge that his playing days at the University of Oregon was pivotal to accomplishing his dreams of playing in the NBA. After four years at Oregon he finished ninth on the all time leading scorers list (1,511) and fourth on the assist list (471) and in 3-pt field goals made (205)

“As a High School Senior at Franklin High School in Seattle, I remember the feeling of winning the 4A State Championship and really began to wonder just how far I could go with this basketball.” Aaron received numerous awards that year but was most proud to finish his high school career with a “fairy tail” ending.

From baseline to baseline, I’m not sure that there are too many people in the league that are quicker than Aaron Brooks. He can stop and shoot on a dime, change directions without loosing any speed and hit you with a pass that only a few could ever make.

His size — all six feet and 160 pounds — will fool you because there’s nothing that he enjoys more than throwing it down or allowing someone to think that he can’t take a charge.

“Yeah, it’s funny like that. For whatever reason people, opponents have seen me step onto the court and look at me with the expression on their face saying, I thought that you would be bigger.”

“I’ve always used it for motivation and just continue to work on perfecting my craft and proving those that doubt my abilities wrong every chance that I get.”

With the first half of the season coming to a close my question to Aaron was what has he learned thus far and was playing in the NBA all that you thought it would be?

“This is better than I could’ve imagine, well I did picture myself starting, getting the most votes in the NBA All Star game and (he breaks out in laughter) seriously, I knew that I had to take my game to the next level and the Houston Rockets chose me with their 26th pick in the first round and I’m not going let them regret it.”

“I’ve learned so much just by watching and listening to some of the veterans that we have on this squad. Shane Battier has a wealth of information and is a great teammate that always has an encouraging word.”

“But most importantly, our coaching staff prepares each of us as a team and gives us the opportunity to play to our individual strengths which creates a cohesive environment for everyone.”

You might not have gotten the chance to see as much of Aaron Brooks as you would’ve like to thus far but I’ve got a feeling that all that is about to change real soon.