Having grown up in Georgia, you may have expected Quinton Aaron, rising star of the critically-acclaimed The Blind Side to favor the Atlanta Hawks as an NBA fan.
Not quite. Aaron, who was in New York City Tuesday night for the “Wills & Walker” fashion show, was beaming when he declared, “I love my Knicks! Gotta go with the Knicks.”
It turns out that after being born in the Bronx, the actor’s basketball loyalties never left the Big Apple.
Ironically enough, the fashion show was hosted by none other than former Hawks star Kevin Willis. The clothing line is catered to men who stand 6’3” and taller. Having rose to fame playing the role of NFL standout Michael Oher, there’s no doubt Aaron fits that mold.
Flanked by adoring fans almost the entire night, Aaron seemed to bask in all of the adoring attention, bear hugging many admirers with a wide grin as he posed for picture after picture.
Seeming like an ideal customer for the clothing line, Aaron was definitely impressed with what he saw. He later added, “I came out here tonight, certainly to support Kevin, but I will definitely be representing the brand, especially by wearing those suits!”
While he took time to support Willis, the former rather physical NBA big man who went to toe-to-toe with the likes of Knicks star Patrick Ewing during his playing days, Aaron also reflected upon how his favorite NBA team is doing today.
The Blind Side star noted, “I love the progress the Knicks have made. Even before Carmelo Anthony came in, this team was doing a lot. Amar'e Stoudemire was doing a good job leading the way. They were just tremendous last year. I feel like the team is ready for extraordinary things. New York finally has its ‘Big Two.’”
Aaron went on to address the ever-popular debate, whether or not the Knicks need to form an official “Big Three” in New York in order to compete with teams like Celtics and the Heat.
He later admitted, “I actually wish the Knicks would have gotten Chris Paul. We’ll see, because they still can make it happen. That’s what I would like, though.”
With a five-time all-star and former NBA Finals MVP in Chauncey Billups running the show, however, isn’t the Knicks’ most pressing need down in the paint? Aaron explained his reasoning, adding, “Chauncey is good, don’t get me wrong. He has that nice jumper. I just don’t think he has the energy or the speed needed to field his position right now.”
Billups’ pace on the court certainly became an interesting topic of conversation last season. Sure, the Knicks crave a big man to play a more physical game down low next to Stoudemire, but it’s obvious that Mike D’Antoni’s offense flows through the point guard. If that offense does not have the quick-paced point guard that it so seemingly requires, can it still be effective? Perhaps the Knicks need more time to gel and build chemistry, but the offense certainly seemed a bit stagnant when replacing the successful Raymond Felton with Billups.
If D’Antoni isn’t able to make adjustments for his team to succeed with an NBA champion running the show, he may be on his way out as head coach of the Knicks, especially with former Hawks coach Mike Woodson recently joining the coaching staff, surely anxious for another opportunity to be the guy at the helm himself.
Nevertheless, Aaron still had high hopes for the team. The Bronx-born star said he felt as though, with time, the Knicks could potentially win a championship with the foundation they have today.
At the same time, knowing a thing or two about athletic big men, having played one on the big screen, the star gushed who would be his dream center to help the team at a time like this, gushing, “They need a guy like Shaq! To have a guy like Shaquille O’Neal, from like 2001, in his prime on the Knicks would be awesome. Definitely.”
A fellow fan can dream, can’t he? Viewers can watch Aaron next on the small screen, this coming Sunday, September 18th, at 9pm EST as he guests on the legal-comedy Drop Dead Diva on Lifetime.