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Q&A With Carlos Boozer: Duke Mount Rushmore, Coach K's Final Season, Partnership With SAXX Underwear

Carlos Boozer takes a shot.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - AUGUST 25: Power Carlos Boozer (4) warms up before a BIG3 3-on-3 basketball league game on August 25, 2019 at the Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, LA. (Photo by Stephen Lew/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

March Madness is finally here, and former Duke star Carlos Boozer is teaming up with SAXX Underwear this season to promote the brand’s new vasectomy registry.

Boozer recently filmed an advertisement for the VaSAXXtomy Registry, which launched earlier this week.

We caught up with Carlos Boozer to discuss his partnership with SAXX Underwear, what Duke needs to do in order to reach the Final Four, his transition from the hardwood to the broadcast booth and more.

The Spun: Can you tell me a bit about your partnership with SAXX Underwear?

Carlos Boozer: It is a good fit. It’s March Madness, and there’s a 30 percent uptick for vasectomies during this time because guys can sit down and watch games all day long while they’re recovering. I’m also helping out with the VaSAXXtomy Registry to help guys celebrate their vasectomy. SAXX will hook guys up with a super comfortable underwear. It has this BallPark Pouch that is incredibly comfortable. Guys can go to SAXX.com/registry and they can get a great package from SAXX.

The Spun: What was it like filming that commercial?

CB: I really enjoyed it. We went out to Mexico City, had a great cast, great producer and great co-star. I’m going to be honest with you, the underwear is really comfortable. The SAXX pouch is special. But yeah, we had a good time filming the ad at this 100-year-old house.

The Spun: Has it felt any different covering Duke in Coach K’s final season?

CB: It’s tough because there are certain staples that have always been around. One year, we lose Roy Williams. This year, we lose Coach K. It’s a little weird thinking about Coach K not being on the sideline after this year. He’s had a great year - the Blue Devils only have five losses. They got all the attention on them, and I feel like these young guys are under a lot of pressure because it’s Coach K’s final season. Only a couple of upperclassmen - mainly Wendell Moore - are playing a lot of minutes. The rest of those guys are sophomores or freshmen. I think Coach is doing a great job of getting the guys ready for the NCAA tournament. The North Carolina loss was a tough game. You walk into the building and you see all your heroes in attendance. It’s a lot of pressure on those kids, but guess what? There’s more basketball left. The ACC Tournament is coming up here in New York.

The Spun: What’s the biggest X-factor for Duke heading into the Tournament?

CB: Their guard play. The strength of that team is their forwards. Mark Williams was named the ACC Defensive Player of the Year. He’s like a Rudy Gobert in college, blocking shots and shooting a high percentage from the floor. And then Paolo Banchero is a mismatch. He’s 6-foot-10, he’s quick enough to go around you and strong enough to overpower you. They have guard play from Trevor Keels, Jeremy Roach and Wendell Moore. Don’t sleep on AJ Griffin. I think he might be the X-factor individually. When he’s knocking down shots and being aggressive, it takes Duke to another level. Overall, their defense, rebounding and guard play has to be elite to get to the Final Four.

The Spun: Who’s on your Mount Rushmore of Duke players?

CB: For me, Grant Hill was my favorite player. He could do everything well. You have to put Christian Laettner in there. I think he had one of the best careers in college basketball history. Jay Williams was unguardable for two seasons. He had over 2,000 points in three years. For me, personally, I have to also add Shane Battier. When I got to campus, he was our best leader. Jay Williams was a better player, and Battier had no problem letting him dictate the offense because he was unselfish. For me, it’d be Grant Hill, Christian Laettner, Shane Battier and Jay Williams.

The Spun: How was the adjustment period for you going from player to broadcaster?

CB: Well, it was tough. I was trying to figure out what to do after I retired. I took two years off to travel, and then I got bored. I had coaches who wanted me to be one of their assistants in the NBA. I didn’t want to do that yet because I wanted to be able to watch my kids grow. I had some friends that wanted me to be an agent with them. Then, ESPN called and was like, ‘Do you want to commentate?’ I did a couple of games, and then the Turner Sports family called me to do some games for them. So I had the chance to work with the two top networks while still getting to spend time with my family.

The Spun: I want to ask you about your NBA career. You played with so many great teammates. Which ones kind of stand out from your time on the court?

CB: I had an amazing time in the NBA. We work our whole lives to get to the NBA, and once you get there, it’s the best feeling in the world because you’re challenging yourself against the best players in the world. The guys that are striving to be there have to work so hard. Every player has a different path to the league. One week in the NBA, I was going up against Chris Webber, Dirk Nowitzki, Rasheed Wallace and Karl Malone. Every single night was a challenge. If you’re a shooting guard, you could go up against Kobe Bryant, Michael Redd, Dwyane Wade and Ray Allen in one week.

I’ll give you a good teammate story. D-Rose gets hurt in Chicago so we bring in Nate Robinson. He was trying to fit in at the time. So every road game he baked us cupcakes to show us that he’s here to help and he doesn’t want to disrupt anything. Cupcakes every road game! He was a great teammate.

Boozer, a former NCAA champion, joined the ACC Network in 2019. He's been a valuable addition to ESPN's college basketball coverage to say the least.

You can read more of our interviews with athletes or media stars here.