MILWAUKEE — The Milwaukee Bucks matchup with the Washington Wizards Wednesday, Feb. 6 was a homecoming for Sam Dekker. The Wizards forward is a Sheboygan native and played for the Wisconsin Badgers. Earlier in the season, it seemed like he might come home to play. FOX6 talked with Dekker about the trade, the reaction from his friends and family and why he doesn’t play NBA 2K.
“It’s great. It’s my first time playing here. Obviously building looks gorgeous. It seems like they did a great job and did everything they were suppose to do with it. It’s a great spot,” said Dekker.
When he’s back in Wisconsin, Dekker gets some special home care during the NBA season.
“It’s good to be home. Obviously I still live here, so I was able to go to my house last night, sleep in my own bed and see my family, which was nice, so it’s good to be here — be back and see some familiar faces,” said Dekker.
For a few moments in December, it seemed like Dekker would be home a lot more. Reports indicated he was traded to the Milwaukee Bucks from Cleveland, but it turned out he was part of a three-team deal, sending him to the Wizards.
“That was the thing. I never thought I was coming here, and that was hard on, I think, a lot people — especially my friends and family. I had so many texts saying, like, ‘You’re coming home,’ and all this stuff, and I’m dealing with the behind the scenes stuff, the logistics stuff already, so I don’t have time to text everyone back, like, ‘Hey, no that’s actually not happening. This is a three-team deal. I’m not.’ So whoever reported it didn’t break all the news, so unfair to people back home because they were toying with them a bit,” said Dekker.
Dekker admitted he would’ve enjoyed coming to Milwaukee, but he said he’s happy in Washington, D.C.
“No. I never thought I was going to be a Buck. If I was, it would be cool to be a part of everything they have going on here, but right now I have to worry about being a Wizard, and we’re trying to make the playoffs, and we’re trying to do our thing and it’s been good so far for me in D.C.,” said Dekker.
Things also changed for Dekker off the court. He married Olivia Harlan, ESPN reporter and daughter of sports announcer Kevin Harlan in July of 2018, but even with his father-in-law as the announcer, he said he has no appeal to play NBA 2K.
“No. I actually don’t play it. I don’t have enough time for that and my guy is terrible in the game. I don’t like playing with myself. I’m terrible in the game, so that doesn’t make it fun,” said Dekker.
He said he’s looking forward to the 2019 Milwaukee Brewers season.
“I’m excited. Obviously a heartbreaking end of the season last year. A team that I think exceeded a lot of expectations, and now those expectations are going to be even grander this year, so hopefully they can still bring that joy to the game and not put to much pressure on themselves, but I know those guys are pretty calm and cool over there. Counsell always has those guys loose,” said Dekker.