Opinion: Two words describe meeting Steven Adams - weirdly cool

OPINION: I clearly remember the day Steven Adams was drafted into the NBA.

It was a gloomy Christchurch day in 2013 and I was in maths class, frantically refreshing the ESPN live updates (sorry, Ms. Lawrence...) detailing where each young player was heading to start their NBA careers.

Some of basketball's biggest names were popping up within the top 10, then all of a sudden, up came his name - 'Steven Adams' selected at 12th spot to the Oklahoma City Thunder.

The moment that changed the face of basketball in New Zealand as we know it.

Meeting Adams was never really something I thought would be possible, but on Sunday, my fully subscribed fan-boy self got that chance.

Newshub sports presenter Andrew Gourdie had the opportunity to interview him, so I tagged along, ticking it off my bucket list (and getting bragging rights over friends too, of course).

After thinking about this pretty extensively, there are two words that best describe what it was like to meet Steven Adams.

Weirdly cool.

In hindsight, that's also a perfect way to describe the 24-year old. He's a weirdly cool human being, who lives in a world filled with video games and Kiwi colloquialism that American media outlets will never understand, which adds a quirky appeal to his personality too.

And just like sister Valerie, his personality is just as big as his presence.

I spent a lot of time watching him captivate the room with his booming voice, and processing that I was just mere metres away from someone who mixes and mingles with basketball royalty every single day.

A man who could probably Facetime-call Russell Westbrook and have a conversation with him right in front of us, all at a touch of a button.


That's probably what took me back the most. There's no doubt I was fan-girling from start to finish, but I was just so keen to see his Facebook Messenger inbox, and read the banter between him and his teammates in their group chats, or texts from players around the league congratulating him on a solid game.

That's the stuff basketball nerds like myself live for.


Then came the photo opportunity and shaking his hand.


And my goodness me... I think that will be the largest hand I ever shake.

It was so huge that for a moment there, my hand and almost entire forearm were swallowed whole by his grappling shake.


All in all, it's a moment I'll be buzzing about for a while yet.

He's just as I expected him to be - goofy, loud, eccentric and very unique.

Those are four key ingredients that have taken him from being a small fish in a gi-normous pond to a gi-normous fish swimming with the big-time stars.

George Berry is a sports producer for Newshub.