Q&A with Mac McClung: AT&T NBA Dunk Pool, G League title and more

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2023 AT&T Slam Dunk Champion, Mac McClung, has teamed up with AT&T to show gratitude to AT&T wireless customers pinch the Dunk Pool Presented by AT&T 5G. FanSided caught up pinch McClung to perceive much astir nan business and talk basketball.

For each dunk successful nan NBA Conference Finals, AT&T will beryllium donating $5,000 to nan prize excavation for customers to usage towards NBA merchandise. And, successful practice pinch NBA Cares, AT&T will besides donate $10 to Digital Divide initiatives for each gift paper redeemed. Max McClung has been nan look of this run and he said pinch FanSided astir nan NBA Playoffs, dunks, kindness and what’s adjacent for his hoops career.

Can you show maine a small spot astir nan run pinch AT&T? What are you astir excited about?

Mac McClung: I’m ace excited to subordinate AT&T. Everything they’re doing to link pinch their customers and nan truth that I get to beryllium a portion of that. That’s conscionable really cool and thing myself and my full squad is excited about.

I cognize that you participated successful nan dunk title this year. What was your favourite dunk of yours that you performed?

McClung: Oh man, I would opportunity nan first dunk was my favorite. Just because I astir apt put nan astir clip into creating that 1 and nan astir clip spent connected that one. To spot it activity out, it was astir apt my favorite.

Was location immoderate dunk that you recovered easier aliases much challenging? Considering nan truth that you made them each look beautiful effortless retired there.

McClung: The past 1 was nan hardest 1 conscionable because I missed it almost each clip nan time before. A mates of weeks before, successful practice, I was getting it each time. Then, nan nighttime before, I was missing it each time. So, I deliberation that 1 was nan biggest alleviation because I kept missing it nan nighttime before.

Since nan dunk contest, what’s been nan biggest alteration successful your life?

McClung: I deliberation conscionable adjusting to different situations, my individual time, and evidently erstwhile I’m retired successful public, it’s a small different pinch group noticing you. But pinch a bunch of things going on, you really person to protect your time, your peace, and equilibrium that I would say.

Now that you’ve gotten to acquisition some assemblage hoops and nan G League, which way would you return to spell pro if you tin spell backmost successful time?

McClung: If I could spell backmost successful time, I would do everything nan same. I deliberation group are talented pinch different opportunities. If I was a kid and I was offered nan money kids tin gain to play successful nan G League today, I don’t cognize what I would do. But now assemblage hoops is paying people. So, I would opportunity I would do it each nan same. I emotion my assemblage acquisition and it’s a different crippled than nan NBA. It was nosy to play that arsenic well, truthful I would instrumentality everything nan same.

How has nan G League helped you hole for nan NBA?

McClung: It’s helped maine pinch preparing for situations. It’s nan aforesaid crippled arsenic nan NBA, possibly a small different. Players successful nan NBA are a small much athletic, and a small taller. But, location are a batch of hoopers successful nan G League and it resembles nan aforesaid crippled arsenic nan NBA. So, I sewage to conscionable really get adapted that first twelvemonth pinch nan shot successful my hands successful nan G League. It made maine much comfortable for erstwhile I do get to those moments successful NBA games.

Do you deliberation you could person helped nan 76ers successful their playoff run?

McClung: I’ll spell pinch nary remark connected that. I mean, I really judge successful myself, but I’m conscionable fresh for immoderate opportunity comes next.

So this one’s a small spot of a non-basketball question. But are you and Riff Raff related?

McClung: No, we are not related astatine all.

If you could prime 1 player, past aliases coming to spell one-on-one successful a dunk title with, who would it be?

McClung: Oh, man, I deliberation it would beryllium Vince Carter. I mean, that was my favourite dunker. So, I deliberation it only makes consciousness to take him.

Was location a favourite subordinate you had increasing up aliases personification you tried modeling your crippled after?

McClung: I ne'er tried to exemplary my crippled aft anyone, but I deliberation that Kobe [Bryant] and [Allen] Iverson were my favourite players. I benignant of liked personalities nan astir and those 2 are my favorite.

I publication location that your shooting shape improved because of a snowboarding accident. How did that thief your shot?

McClung: You guys get nan details, man, I don’t cognize wherever you guys get this. I was not a very bully shooter astatine all. I conscionable started playing hoops and past I collapsed my arm. I met this feline aft I collapsed my limb conscionable randomly and you know, he helped maine benignant of conscionable reset my shot, my wrist, and everything. He’s my champion friend’s dada so, it was cool to benignant of commencement complete pinch him and alteration my form.

Do you retrieve your first dunk? Do you retrieve really aged you were? Was it successful a game, successful practice, etc.?

McClung: My first dunk was, I deliberation it was for illustration my freshman twelvemonth of precocious school. I was astir 15 years old. And, yeah, it was something. I was astir apt a batch much excited than everybody other that was there. But I thought it was nan coolest point and  I fell successful emotion pinch dunking correct aft that.

Were you nan aforesaid tallness backmost past arsenic you are now?

McClung: No, I’m a batch taller now. I utilized to beryllium really short. I was a precocious bloomer. I was like, I was for illustration 5-foot-7 successful my freshman twelvemonth of precocious schoolhouse erstwhile I was dunking.

Is location thing that you were moving connected specifically to thief you amended connected your dunking aliases to thief you pinch your vertical?

McClung: Yeah, conscionable a batch of plyometrics and a batch of repetitive jumps. Also, I would spell retired trying to touch nan backboard each time and I was conscionable benignant of obsessed pinch it wide and I deliberation that’s what benignant of helped maine beryllium fresh for erstwhile I could dunk connected nan 10-foot hoop. I was ever dunking connected seven-eight feet, truthful I was practicing for erstwhile I had nan opportunity erstwhile I sewage older.

Of nan remaining teams, whom would you prime to triumph this year’s NBA Finals?

McClung: I deliberation it’s open. It’s a really unfastened situation. I’m going to opportunity Denver will triumph it each this year.

I’m not judge what benignant of euphony you perceive to aliases if you’re acquainted pinch nan creator Russ, but he really name-dropped you successful a opus that he released this month. Are you alert of that?

McClung: So, it’s funny. One of my champion friends, Nate Pierre Louis is nan biggest Russ instrumentality and he knew earlier it came out. So he called me, he was like, “You’re astir to beryllium a Russ song.” My champion friend is for illustration his biggest fan, he loves him and he recovered retired that I was going to beryllium connected nan song. I cognize Russ, he’s a awesome rapper. I listened to it and it was conscionable really cool. My friends perceive to it successful nan car and it was conscionable like, that’s dope.

How does that feel? Did he person to get clearance from you? Or he conscionable did it?

McClung: Not astatine all, if you want to put maine successful immoderate euphony nary problem.

Who is nan champion dunker you’ve played against successful personification aliases witnessed successful personification different than yourself?

McClung: A really slept-on dunker Is Jeff Green. He amazes maine astatine his property and really he dunks. I emotion watching him dunk.

So I cognize that you had a shot life operation portion and I conscionable wanted to perceive your thoughts connected nan worth of that and nan mixtape civilization and really you deliberation that affected your career.

McClung: It was benignant of weird. It benignant of started getting really, really large erstwhile I sewage to precocious school. I deliberation now it’s much important than it was backmost then. Back past it was conscionable really cool and it was really uncommon for you to get one. Now, It seems for illustration it benignant of controls hoops successful a batch of ways. Like, conscionable group play a small different style. I deliberation group play a small much mixtape hoops style, which, you know, that’s nan game. You sewage to beryllium capable to conscionable accommodate to it. It was cool increasing up and conscionable benignant of seeing those guys I looked up to connected nan tapes and past yet getting my ain tape. I thought was conscionable a cool experience.

I want to talk much astir your G convention championship. How does it consciousness to beryllium a G League champion?

McClung: Man, that was great. I deliberation a batch of nan guys successful nan G League are conscionable focused connected trying to make nan astir of their business and they tin get selfish sometimes. But that was nan beauty successful our group. Our privilege was to triumph a title and nary matter if group worth a G League title aliases not, we did and I deliberation group admit that. I deliberation conscionable our squad came together and it was a beautiful thing. Winning a title successful immoderate athletics connected immoderate level is simply a typical thing.

Did you guys get rings?

McClung: Yeah, we get rings. I deliberation they’re coming successful a fewer months, but we sewage rings. We’re ace excited.

I wanted to perceive much astir nan AT&T collaboration. Would you beryllium capable to spell into specifics astir nan run itself?

McClung: AT&T, for each dunk successful nan NBA Conference Finals, is going to donate “$5G’s,” which is amazing. It’s really nosy to beryllium a portion of that group and nary matter what squad you’re playing/rooting for, it’s nosy to watch nan dunks. I’m looking guardant to seeing really galore dunks really happen. I deliberation it’s nosy for each of america to travel on and watch.

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