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Drew Ellis covers Oakland University basketball for The Oakland Press. His news and notes keep you up to date with Golden Grizzlies men's basketball.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

J.J. Redick talks about Travis Bader's pursuit of NCAA 3-point record


Photo by Dylan Dulberg
 Phil Collin, the Los Angeles Clippers beat writer for L.A. News Group, blogged about his interview with J.J. Redick about the possibility of Oakland's Travis Bader breaking his NCAA 3-point record, 457, set in 2006. Collin was kind enough to send the entirety of the interview, used below. 

Clippers guard J.J. Redick has been reading up on the bomber in black and gold rapidly closing in on the former Duke star's heralded mark.
"I just found an article the other day about him, so I learned a little bit about him, a skinny little kid coming into college and he works his butt off, that he's a good representation of his school.
"I heard something this summer, someone said something about it to me so I knew it was going to be broken this year."
Redick shared his recollection of the mental toll the chase can put on its chaser.
"It was interesting because it was like a two-week period where there was the 3-point record, then the Duke record, then the ACC record. By the end of it, I was just mentally exhausted, and looking back, I probably shouldn't have been. But when you're in the moment, it's all you think about. Mentally it fatigues you a little bit."
Bader said his family and friends are steering clear of the subject. 
"I do my best not to talk about it," he said. "It has affected me a little bit." 
Redick recalled the time after he set the mark, Feb. 14, 2006.
"It didn't really affect any of that (on court or personal life). When it was over, there was a little week stretch where we had a couple games that I wasn't as good as I had been. Maybe it was just partly because I hadn't had a bad game in a while (laugh). There was a little bit of just like mentally and emotionally some of the things that happen -- I don't think Travis started his career thinking 'Hey, I'm going to break the all-time 3-point record.' I don't know many people that set out to do things like that. Most people think about 'I want to win a championship at this school,' or if you're a mid-major 'I want to get to the NCAA, or the Sweet 16.' So to have something happen and have it become a reality, it takes a lot out of you."
Like Bader now, Redick's success came as a result of the typical game plan put forth by Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski.
"If you look at the games, beside the Temple game in which they ran a box and one, it was my normal shooting percentage, very efficient stuff. I don't think (Coach K) would go out of his way to change a game plan so I could get a record. His focus was always on Duke winning basketball games." 
Oakland coach Greg Kampe said after Friday's win over Youngstown State, he actually gotten upset with Bader because the sharpshooter had not been demanding the ball as he typically does. After a 1-for-6 effort from behind the 3-point line in the first half, Bader decided that was enough, hitting four more triples in the second half, two early on, in a stretch where he scored 10 consecutive Oakland points in about two and a half minutes. 
Friendly encouragement for Bader by the pole-sitter may not be necessary. 
"I thought about texting him the other day, telling him to stop being such a head case. I'll just wait til he breaks it," Redick said.
Bader revealed in a recent interview with MLive, despite his father's longtime employment at and the Bader family's proximity to Michigan State, Bader grew up as a North Carolina Tar Heels fan. But that didn't stop him from admiring Redick, a marksman for the rival Blue Devils. 
"I won't hold it against him," Redick said of Bader's support for the rival Heels. 
Bader said after Friday's game, he was drawn to Carolina Baby Blue by Michael Jordan.
"I loved Michigan State growing up, but I was a big UNC guy," Bader said.
A recent feature story about Bader in The Associated Press points out the Oakland guard is on pace to break the mark in fewer games than Redick. 
Redick played in 139 games, while Bader has appeared in 127 games with Oakland. The Golden Grizzlies have eight more regular-season games, beginning Sunday at Milwaukee, and at least one conference tournament game.  
Collin notes the Clippers are preparing to send Bader a congratulatory video once the record is broken. Oakland coach Greg Kampe said the Golden Grizzlies will request the game ball and honor the mark with a celebration when the they return home to the O'rena. 
As for future honors for Bader, Kampe quickly deflected the possibility of Bader's No. 3 joining Nos. 1, 5, and 34 on the south wall of the O'rena.
Redick's No. 4 was retired the following season by the Blue Devils.
"I guess he'll have to hit three more 3s," Kampe said of Bader. "That would be a good reason to put (his jersey) up there."

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