C.Y. Ellis: Who would you say have been some of your toughest opponents?
Mark Edwards: There’s no streetball player that can say, in any of our games that we’ve done, that have played against Hot Sauce and scored twenty points on him. I’ve got all the videotapes. I’ve got five years’ worth of footage, and we have not one game where any guard has gone up against him and showed him up. And you know what? I’m looking for the day that happens so that I can tease him, but I can’t say nothing to him.
CYE: There seem to be a lot of guys lately trying to make their names by talking about Hot Sauce.
Mark: Like Tru Baller. We have the videotape, and I’m going to make sure you get it. Call me tomorrow, and I’m going to send you clips of the game against Tru Baller because I have it on tape. I might even send him a copy of the tape on disc, and I’ll have my videographer cut the game down to show every possession where Hot Sauce and Tru Baller went up against each other. We have the tape. He doesn’t.
CYE: King Handles told me that, even though Tru Baller says otherwise, Sauce messed him up.
Mark: He played against him twice. He played against him in Mobile, Alabama, and Sauce killed him. He did one move, then threw the ball in the crowd and said he killed Hot Sauce. Then he played against him in Oakland at the Players’ Ball with YPA, and Sauce scored twelve straight points on him in the first quarter. I was like “Sauce, man, that’s enough. He’s no competition; don’t even waste your time on him.” So then people were criticizing Sauce and saying that he didn’t do no moves, but I was like, “Well, he wasn’t here to do moves. He’s here to destroy him. So, what do you want? Do you want moves, or do you want buckets?”
CYE: What would you say is the best play you’ve ever pulled off?
Hot Sauce: The best play I pulled off was in Flint, Michigan…
Mark: What about Tuskegee? You remember Tuskegee, Alabama when you did that Boomerang and hit the jumper and the crowd ran on the floor?
Sauce: Yeah. The second time they didn’t let me finish the play. They bum-rushed the floor. Oh, and when I dropped somebody in my home city, in Atlanta.
Mark: I don’t think anybody has made anybody fall outside of you. You dropped Professor, you dropped a lot of people. Who else has bodies like that? That’s what I want to know. Put that question out there. Do you know how hard it is to cross somebody over and make them fall? Outside of Bone Collector and Sauce, I don’t see nobody doing it.
CYE: You have a huge repertoire already, but do you have any new moves we haven’t seen yet?
Sauce: It’s just about me pulling all my moves off now. This is a new generation now, and everybody’s doing what I’m doing, but I’m still holding it down. I mean, you just don’t see me like it is. I am what I am.
CYE: Why do you think there are so many haters out there?
Sauce: I don’t think I can answer that. That’s a question mark for anybody who raps, balls, anything. You could be a well-known ping-pong player and you’d be hated on. It don’t matter what you do.
Mark: Wilt Chamberlain was one of the greatest basketball players ever, and people hated him. Michael Jordan was hated in many cities. What’s funny is that one year on the And 1 tour, I heard they had a bet that when Hot Sauce came to Madison Square Garden, that they were going to boo him. That’s the year Professor hit the game-winning shot. But in that game, I don’t think people realised that Hot Sauce and Future went at it. Future came down and scored and then, when Hot Sauce got the ball, fifteen thousand people in Madison Square Garden stood on their feet to see what move Hot Sauce was going to do, and he pulled the move off. That has never happened before in the history of Madison Square Garden. Nobody has made the Garden stand on their feet to see what you’re about to do. If anybody can name an occasion, basketball-wise, where the whole Garden stood on their feet, man, I’d give them a million dollars.
Sauce: And we can do that, too. I’m streetball’s first millionaire.
CYE: Whenever there’s someone with your level of exposure, people feel as if they know them from what they see on the television or read in the magazines. What should people know about you that they don’t?
Sauce: Basically, that I’m just myself. You ain’t got to be afraid to speak to me.
Mark: I think the biggest thing is that he’s a father. He takes care of his son, and he’s with that little boy every day. I’ve probably never told him that, but he’s a good father to his son. He’s a good provider. He doesn’t pay child support. He pays support. He’s there with his son every single day, from morning ‘til night, and that’s the biggest thing that I think people don’t know about him. He didn’t go overseas with And 1 last year not because he didn’t want to, but he did so because he wanted to be there for the birth of his first son. It was crazy because we stayed and stayed and stayed, and then we left town to go somewhere right quick, and she went into labour and we turned around and came back.
CYE: What do you think you’d be doing right now if you weren’t playing streetball?
Sauce: I think I’d still be the number one streetball player in the world. They would have had open runs, and nobody would have seen me play, so I’d have come even in 2003, and people wouldn’t have been doing what I was doing. I think I still would have been who I am.
CYE: What goals do you have for your life away from the court?
Sauce: To have a big, nice crib and have my son follow in my footsteps.
CYE: Are you playing basketball with him yet?
Sauce: Yeah, all the time.
CYE: How do you want people to remember you when you retire?
Mark: That dude ain’t never going to retire! He’s going to be sixty years old pulling moves on some little kids.
Sauce: Nah, I’m going to retire from public playing if I can get this acting thing going.
CYE: So do you think that’s the future for Hot Sauce?
Sauce: Most likely. That’s probably what’s going to happen. As far as that, I’m going to pass the torch on to my son.
CYE: Finally, do you have any messages for the fans?
Sauce: I’d like to thank the fans for supporting me when I was with And 1. They’re supporting me even more now that I’m not with And 1. Let’s see what the support’s going to be like when this movie comes out. Let’s see what kind of love they show me. Oh, and tell the fans this: I still haven’t lost my game.