Interview with Joseph Forte

Former Tar Heel All-American Joseph Forte agreed to this short interview, and also took questions from other Boston-area media, after scoring 12 points in the Boston Celtics' summer league loss to Milwaukee on Sunday afternoon.

TW: How would you assess what you learned this week, the whole experience?

JF: It was a good experience, just dealing with the pro rules, the pro game, and then working on my game.

TW: Is it different for you not to be the primary offensive option out there?

JF: Yeah, it's very different, but that's a reality, I mean with Antoine Walker and Paul Pierce, so I've got to play my role.

TW: Is the level of play higher than what you thought?

JF: I don't know if you can truly judge, the NBA is a probably a lot different than this. It was just good to be out there and get a feel for the game.

TW: Did you get more comfortable over the course of the week?

JF: Yeah, I got comfortable I think as the week progressed.

TW: Are you old enough to remember when the Celtics were winning?

JF: Sheesh - I remember, I just remember watching highlight tapes of Cousy and those guys, Bill Russell.

Reporter: The coaches said they were looking at how you guys would handle fatigue this week, 6 games in 7 nights.

JF: I didn't get grueling minutes – Joe Johnson did, but I really didn't get fatigued out there, I was playing 20 minutes a game.

Reporter: What are you doing the next two months? Theoretically you're on your own?

JF: We're going to come back up here and work out, get stronger and that type of things. We'll be fine.

Reporter: Have you been bonding with the other rookies [Joe Johnson and Kedrick Brown], are you going to be hanging together or have you been hanging together?

JF: Definitely, we came in together, and whenever we have to do something we're all rookies and have to do it together, so we've kind of bonded.

TW: Are you settled down in Boston, are you set up with a place?

JF: No, not yet. I'm about to, when I come back up here in August.

TW: How long do you think it's going to take you to be bigger than Pedro?

JF: (laughs) I'll play my part . . . I'm just trying to get some playing time.

TW: Are you excited to be in Boston with your brother being down at Brown [in Providence]?

JF: Exactly, it's a perfect fit.

TW: Are you planning to go see him play?

JF: Yeah, a lot.

TW: Some people when you left because you didn't have a press conference in Chapel Hill, wanted to know if there was something going on, were you running away from Chapel Hill...

JF: Right-

TW: do you want to comment on that?

JF: I mean, actually, Coach Gut came up here for the first game, so I'm not running away from my Chapel Hill...that's a nice place to be.

TW: You're happy with your experience there?

JF: Yeah.

Reporter: What are some of the things you have to work on, what are your priorities?

JF: I think I have to work on my strength, my ball handling, same old thing, I still have to address those issues.

TW: Have you gotten a chance to know Coach O'Brien at all yet?

JF: Yeah, he's my type of guy, I mean, he's real laid back but he can get fiery, that type of deal, so I like him a lot.

TW: This is like your fifth coaching staff in five years, something like that?

JF: Yeah...

TW: So you're used to adjusting...

JF:'s [another] adjustment.

With that Forte made his way out of the Clark Athletic Center and joined summer league teammates Milt Palacio and Mike Mardesich in a white stretch limousine provided by the Celtics to take the rookie to his afternoon flight out of town. Forte ended his taste of professional basketball on Sunday with a 4-11 shooting performance, including 1-4 from 3 point range, in 20 minutes of play.

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