You’ll begin the season as the starting shooting guard. You must be very happy.
E’Twaun Moore: Oh yeah, definitely, I came a long way. Worked a lot to get in a rotation, to earn a spot in the league, it’s been a journey. Now I’m just happy and ready for the opportunity.
When did you learn that you were going to start at shooting guard and what did coach Alvin Gentry tell you?
EM: He didn’t tell me anything but you know, just going to practice and the role I had in the games I’ve played, I figured it out. I take it as a challenge and as another step in my career.
You scored 25 points against the Rockets during the Pelicans’ China trip. Was that game a key factor in order to convince Gentry you could be the starter?
EM: I would say yes, but at the end it wasn’t just that Rockets game but all the games. I think I played well, playing good defense, getting the flow of the team.
How did the Pelicans convince you to sign with them?
EM: I think just me having a bigger role on a team, that was very important for me. I’m here working hard, starting right now, so I’m very happy with my decision.
You come off a breakthrough season. What happened last year to accomplish that success that led you to a four-year guaranteed contract with the Pelicans?
EM: I just worked on my game. I worked as much as possible during the 2015 offseason and it helped me during the year. The hard work paid off.
It’s been quite a journey for you from the day you were drafted till now.
EM: Yeah. Like I said, nothing was promised to me. I had to take everything… I had to earn it. But no matter how, I kept working hard.
The Pelicans were plagued by injuries last year. Then the Bryce Dejean-Jones tragedy in May, and now the situation with Jrue Holiday’s wife. Do you think the team is mentally strong enough to deal with all that?
EM: Oh yeah, definitely. All the struggles that we’ve had, now we can only go up. I’ll just work hard and help my teammates to win games.
How can you help rookie Buddy Hield as he adjusts to speed of the NBA game?
EM: Well, I’ll just try to share the knowledge I learned from my experience in the league.
Do you think Anthony Davis will be an MVP candidate this season?
EM: Oh yeah, most definitely. He’s a great talent. He’s 6-11, he can shoot, he can do everything on the court and I’m sure he’ll have a great season. We’ll definitely try to make the playoffs.
When you arrived to Chicago in 2014, did you think that it was a crucial moment in your career to become a solid NBA player?
EM: Well, the opportunity I had in Chicago definitely helped me. I played good games, then starting, and that’s when I realized if I can do it here, I can do it anywhere.
ESPN.com called you “a credible 3-and-D guard.” Thoughts?
EM: Well, yeah, I can shoot the three, but also I can get in the paint, distribute the ball, I can play point guard and shooting guard. A do-it-all guard.