Making his first appearance in Juneau in three years, Carlos Boozer attended Juneau-Douglas High School boys basketball team’s season-ending banquet on Tuesday. As fans lined up for photos with the former JDHS basketball star and NBA all-star, the Empire caught up with Boozer at the banquet to talk about his career and life plans. (Don’t know what holdat means? Boozer explains in the video above. Sort of.)
How long’s it been since you’ve been back in Juneau?
It’s been about two or three years. It feels great, man, I love coming home. I’m always a native, this is where I grew up at. The mountains are so pretty, the water, the fishing, the seafood is so good. Just brings back a lot of memories when I touch down in Juneau.
What have you been up to lately?
A lot. Spending time with my kids mainly. My girl, travelling, my family, my parents. Letting my body recover from a long career. But also just enjoying time with my family and friends. I like to watch movies, go jet skiing, go to the beach a lot. I’m kind of a sunbather. I live in Miami and New York, so I do a lot of jet skiing and swimming in the ocean.
Have you been catching up with a lot of old connections here?
It’s great to come back and see friends I grew up with. I saw one of my oldest friends today, I’ve known her since I was in like fifth or sixth grade. It’s good to see everyone, see what they’re doing and catch up. It’s almost like a reunion.
Did you expect it to take 18 years for JDHS to win another championship?
You never know. Every year you have a chance, and this year happened to be their year. I am super proud of the boys, they played really well, you can tell they’re a super close group of guys, a lot of studs on the team, led by a lot of great seniors, obviously a great coaching staff. They made us all real proud.
What’s next for you? Taking a little time off after your career?
I have. I might go into commentating, might be an analyst. I’ve done some stuff with NBA TV, ESPN. But I also might come back, I might come back and play again. I kind of miss it, especially now, the playoffs are the best time in the NBA, so I might come back, we’ll see.
So, you’re looking to land another contract?
Maybe, maybe, we’ll see. Stay tuned, man.
What do you remember most when you look back on your championship years?
Just the guys I played with. James Wilson, Robert Ridgeway, Evan Tromble, Christian Carpeneti, we just had so many great guys, Mike Vanderjack, we had so many great players I played with. No matter how good you are individually, you can’t win on your own, and I had a bunch of studs around me that don’t get as much credit as they deserve. I was led by coach (George) Houston, who was amazing and gave me the freedom to lead the way I wanted to lead, the freedom to grow as a player. It’s just awesome to have the whole town behind you, and for me that was the best part.