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Oklahoma City Thunder Q&A: Thunder summer league guard Michael Stockton learned early on not to worry about outside expectations

Michael Stockton might be best known as the son of Hall of Fame point guard John Stockton. But Michael has carved out a productive career in his own right.
by Darnell Mayberry Published: July 10, 2014
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photo - Oklahoma City Thunder's Michael Stockton, front left, and Mitch McGary (33) go after a loose ball in front of Brooklyn Nets' Marquis Teague, left, during an NBA summer league basketball game in Orlando, Fla., Monday, July 7, 2014. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
Oklahoma City Thunder's Michael Stockton, front left, and Mitch McGary (33) go after a loose ball in front of Brooklyn Nets' Marquis Teague, left, during an NBA summer league basketball game in Orlando, Fla., Monday, July 7, 2014. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

Michael Stockton might be best known as the son of Hall of Fame point guard John Stockton. But Michael has carved out a productive career in his own right. After a standout career at Westminster College, Stockton went abroad to play professionally in Germany. The 6-foot-1 point guard currently is playing for the Thunder’s summer league team this week in Orlando, Fla.

Q: What was it like growing up and stepping on a basketball court as a point guard named Stockton?

A: There was never any shortage of outside expectations. You’d always hear, ‘You’re not as good as your dad’ or whatever. But there really wasn’t much to it. It was just going to play basketball.

When were you able to ignore those expectations and feel comfortable with who you are as a player?

I cracked that at a pretty young age. Even grade school, high school, I realized that my dad was one of the best players to ever play the game. He wasn’t someone that I ever expected to be as good as playing wise. So I wasn’t worried with what people would say or expectations in that regard, because the bar was set pretty darn high. So I just knew that I had to become my own player and find my niche.

What were games like in your backyard, how competitive were they and what were some of the lessons you took away from those?

The games at our house were always very competitive. It wasn’t just with my dad, it was with my older brother, my younger brother. Growing up, something was always going on. We were always playing some sort of game. So I learned at a young age you had to play your heart out if you ever wanted to win or make teams or anything. That’s just what was expected to win in my own backyard.

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by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
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