Interview with Sean Elliott

SeanElliott photo 1

With the NBA season coming up next month, I took the opportunity to interview former NBA All-Star and current San Antonio Spurs full-time color commentator and broadcaster for Fox Sports One, Sean Elliott. I had the pleasure of meeting Elliott in person following a Spurs game last December. He couldn’t be nicer, and I knew he’d offer great insight for Second Take With Spencer A. about the upcoming basketball season. Here are some highlights from our phone call:

Zied: What will be the biggest challenge for the Spurs in order to defend their championship crown?

Elliott: The biggest challenge will be that they have a target on their back. After winning a championship, every game you play the following season, you get other teams’ best shot and every team will circle “Spurs” on their schedule to see how they stack up against them.

Zied: If LeBron James, returning to Cleveland to play with Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving, wins more rings, will anything be taken away from his legacy?

Elliott: Nothing will be taken away, not at all. He’s cemented his legacy as one of the greatest players in the game. He can win more championships, and no player can win on his own without great teammates.

Zied: How many more years do you see the Spurs contending for a championship? With Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili on their ways out, how much do you think they have left in the tank?

Elliott: A lot surprisingly, with the way they train in the offseason. Greg Popovich is the best coach at managing players. He won’t play old guys like Duncan and Manu as much, he’ll be relying on his bench. I see another two years of title contention.

Zied: With Kawhi Leonard winning the finals MVP last season, how much potential does he have? All-Star? Superstar? Hall of Famer? How much better can he get?

Elliott: It’s his 3rd year in the league, and he came out as a sophomore in college. I like to stick to the four-year college rule, meaning I consider his rookie season last season. When I played, it took me three years to feel confident. My fourth year was my first All-Star Game. Leanard has a high superstar ceiling because he does something different from most players; he plays exceptional defense.

Zied: Who do you think will be the best NBA player coming out of this year’s draft?

Elliott: That’s truly a hard question to answer. I like sticking with the guys who show talent. Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins are good players with tremendous upside, but Joel Embiid (when healthy) could be the most dominant.

Zied: With the re-signing of Carmelo Anthony, an improved Amar’e Stoudemire, a new point guard, center, and coaching staff, how far will the New York Knicks be able to go this season?

Elliott: It all depends on the stars. Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire have to play at an extremely high level on offense, but especially on defense. They need major improvement on D, but I think they will improve on the defensive end under Derek Fisher and Phil Jackson. They’ve won championships by defending. I believe the Knicks have a solid chance of making the playoffs this season, but don’t expect anything too crazy.

What’s your opinion?

2014 NFL Predictions


With the NFL season beginning September 4th, everyone from to to is weighing in on what they think will happen during the upcoming season.

My predictions are based on what took place this offseason with each team. However, I am taking into account little of last year’s results.

NFC playoff teams

Division winners

Philadelphia Eagles: 10-6

Green Bay Packers: 11-5

New Orleans Saints: 11-5

Seattle Seahawks: 12-4


Wildcard teams

Carolina Panthers: 10-6

Detroit Lions: 10-6


Will miss the cut: San Francisco 49ers

I do not believe the San Francisco 49ers will make the playoffs for a multitude of reasons. They lost Aldon Smith for nine games; the aging of Frank Gore and Patrick Willis will hinder their progress as well. Navarro Bowman recovering from an ACL injury won’t help either. In addition, the 49ers lost Carlos Rodgers and Donte Whitner to free agency.


NFC Championship Game

Seattle Seahawks vs. New Orleans Saints


AFC playoff teams

Division winners

New England Patriots: 12-4

Cincinnati Bengals: 10-6

Indianapolis Colts: 11-5

Denver Broncos: 12-4


Wildcard teams

Kansas City Chiefs: 11-5

Oakland Raiders: 9-7


Will miss the cut: San Diego Chargers

The San Diego Chargers will not make the playoffs this season not because of their offense, but because of their depleted defense. Late in the season they always fall apart because their offense is not on the field enough due to the defense’s slacking. As talented as Phillip Rivers is, the Chargers don’t have enough firepower to pull through.


AFC championship game

Denver Broncos vs. New England Patriots


Super Bowl

New England Patriots vs. Seattle Seahawks

The winner of the Super Bowl will be…The New England Patriots! In this day and age, it’s nearly impossible to repeat as champions in the NFL as the Seahawks are attempting to do. The Patriots have one of the best, if not the best, quarterback (Tom Brady), coach (Bill Belichick), and tight end (Rob Gronkowski). With the additions of Darelle Revis and Brandon Browner, the ‘legion of boom’ will be compromised and will not have enough offensive firepower to outlast the Patriots now vaunted defense. Keep in mind they have Vince Wilfork, Rob Ninkovich, Chandler Jones, Donta Hightower, Jerod Mayo in their front seven. It will be an arduous task for anyone to beat this well-oiled machine, if they stay healthy.

Super Bowl MVP: Tom Brady

Think I’m right? Think I’m wrong? Weigh in with your predictions in the comments below.


About me:

I’m Spencer (Alexander) Zied, a 10th grader from New York, New York. I love to play basketball, football and tennis, and am a big fan of the Knicks, Giants, Yankees, Oregon football and North Carolina basketball teams. I’m also a big fan of First Take and Sportscenter on ESPN. You can email me at or connect with me on Twitter, on Facebook, or on Instagram (szied713).

2nd Take with Spencer A


I’m a big fan of ESPN’s First Take, hosted by Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless. I love how they argue and debate. I also know that they know what they’re talking about.

Watching the show for the last three years inspired me to write my own blog and give my opinions, predictions, and thoughts about anything that has to do with sports, both on and off the court or field. I also plan to interview athletes and coaches and anyone who works in or comments on sports.

Here are some of highlights from this weekend in sports:

  • The NFL put new rules in for domestic violence cases. This should hopefully reduce crime in the NFL.
  • Aldon Smith was suspended from the NFL for nine games for using banned substances, having multiple DUI arrests, and for getting arrested at the airport for saying “bomb.” I think that’s just the right amount of time for now.
  • The potential first openly gay NFL player Michael Sam was cut from Rams, but can sign with any team’s practice squad. I think the Giants and 49ers are top contenders to sign him.
  • USA defeats Finland and Turkey in FIBA World Cup matchups. We should expect nothing less from the greatest basketball players in the world.
  • NBA star Kevin Durant signs a new Nike deal worth $300 million over 10 years.

I’m excited for September, when the NBA and NFL seasons begin and the sports world awakens from its summer break. Although it has been relatively quiet, the offseason in the NBA and NFL hasn’t been. Some highlights:

*Lebron James returned home to Cleveland;

*Carmelo Anthony signed long term with New York;

*Paul George broke his leg and will miss the season; and

*James Harden claims he’s the best player alive.

With the plethora of new coaches and players, the NBA season will surely be a special one.

As for the NFL, there will be high entertainment as well. With Johnny Manziel drama on one hand, and the intense wait for the season to start, this NFL season will kickoff well.

I don’t know about you, but I am excited! I just hope that this year there won’t be an arrest every single week in the NFL, that there won’t be as many teams regretting the huge contracts they’ve given some of their players, and that athletes will focus more on their game and less on Instagram.

What are you looking forward to most during the upcoming NBA and NFL seasons? Post your comments below.


About me:

I’m Spencer (Alexander) Zied, a 10th grader from New York, New York. I love to play basketball, football and tennis, and am a big fan of the Knicks, Giants, Yankees, Oregon football and North Carolina basketball teams. I’m also a big fan of First Take and Sportscenter on ESPN. You can email me at or connect with me on Twitter, on Facebook, or on Instagram (szied713).

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