Twice in his career Lance Allred has gotten a chance to play. In college he transferred out of an uncomfortable situation at Utah and shined at Weber State averaging nearly 18 points and 12 rebounds. Then, last year, a series of events unfolded that moved him from being the 4th String center to the starter on one of the better teams in the NBA Development League, the Idaho Stampede. This year, along with teammate and fellow D-League All-Star Randy Livingston, he averaged 16 points and 10 rebounds and lead his team to the best record in the league, and just today earned himself a call-up with the NBAs Cleveland Cavaliers. A few weeks ago at the All-Star game in New Orleans I had the opportunity to speak with Lance about his rise within the league and his chances of getting called up or heading to Europe.
Richard Walker: At the end of last season it seemed like you turned into a 20-10 machine. What lead to that?
Lance Allred: You just have to wait for your opportunity, and I was basically the fourth string center last year behind Peter John Ramos, Jeff Graves and Mouhamed Sene and then all within one week in March they all left. Mouhamed got called up, Pete broke his leg and Jeff got called to Turkey and so by default I was the lone center. One mans misfortune is another mans opportunity and if I didnt take advantage of that then shame on me.
Richard Walker: It seems like you really capitalized on it this year. Obviously youve become an All-Star.
Lance Allred: Yeah, its been a great ride. Its been a great season. All-Star games are All-Star games, and obviously it would have been nice had we played better and won, but its just the fact that you get to be here and be a part of it. The [Idaho] Stampede were rewarded and Randy [Livingston], Cory [Violette] and I, along with the coaching staff, were here and its been a great experience for everybody. Thats the most important thing, that you have a good time while youre here.
Richard Walker: I thought you played really well for the [Boston] Celtics this summer. What was that like for you?
Lance Allred: It went well, and I did everything they asked me to, but so did Glen Davis, and he was their second round pick so theyve got to follow through with that. Hes been great with them this year, and it is what it is.
Richard Walker: Ive heard that you got a lot of offers [after summer league] from European teams, is that true?
Lance Allred: Yeah, but I just felt the need to give it one more year in the D-League so I had no regrets, no what-ifs, so I could at least say to myself I did the best I possibly could.
Richard Walker: Is Europe something you would consider in the future then?
Lance Allred: Yeah, if nothing comes up here. This is pretty much my last year in the D-League two years is plenty enough and after that if nothing happens then Ill have to go overseas. I was a European History major in college so Im not intimidated by any aspect of going overseas.
Richard Walker: A lot of players I speak with are completely terrified with the language barrier and stuff like that, but it doesnt seem like it will be an issue for you.
Do you get feedback on what theyre looking for from you in order to get called up?
Lance Allred: All I hear is that I have to be patient. At this point you just have to wait, and keep an even keel, and keep showing up to work each day, and playing hard. Most of it is just timing.
Richard Walker: Is there any rumors youve been hearing during this weekend?
Lance Allred: Yeah, but youve got to maintain that even keel because it can be emotionally draining to buy into it. Just up and down, and up and down. If you buy into it you get too high, you get too low.
Richard Walker: Definitely. Great, thanks a lot.