WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — The fifth episode of the Sasha Live! podcast live from Mad Mushroom Pizza was a huge hit on Wednesday night, with nearly 100 people coming down to watch the 30-minute podcast with Purdue guard Sasha Stefanovic and special guest Jaden Ivey, and hundreds more watching online.
Ivey, the sophomore from South Bend, is off to a great start this year during Purdue's seven-game winning streak. He and Stefanovic talked about the hot start to the season with BoilermakersCountry.com publisher Tom Brew, and also broke down the start of the Big Ten season on Friday and what it might mean to be ranked No. 1 in the country next week if they get past the Hawkeyes.
Here are the highlights of the podcast. You can watch the entire show below. The next podcast is on MONDAY, DEC. 6 at 7 p.m. ET at Mad Mushroom Pizza, 320 West State Street in West Lafayette. The show can also be watched live on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
— Sasha on big win over Florida State
"They're a great team and I have a lot of respect for them. Coach (Leonard) Hamilton is a great coach and the way he does things, they've been very successful for a ton of years. They have such a unique style where they switch everything and they can be tough. We were able to get some good open looks early, and Jaden hit a lot of big shots early.
"When you can beat a quality team like that from the ACC, that's a great win for us. I've played them three times now, and the first two times, you're right, it's a big adjustment and you get on your heels early. We really did a good job of that last year. We stepped up early, our bench was great and everybody really stepped up and played well.''
— Sasha on Brandon Newman's hot hand
:"Brandon has been tremendous. He can come off the bench and score just like that. He did it at multiple levels last night, and he's a great rebounder, too. He played some great minutes, and these last few games, he's really shot the ball well.''
— Sasha on depth and all the moving pieces
"We really got after one another all summer, but while you're doing that, you really gain trust with one another, too. There's a lot of different ways we can play offensively and defensively. We're really deep in that sense. Everybody has already had a game or two where they've really stepped up for us.''
— Sasha on rooting for Big Ten teams
"No doubt you want to see our conference do well and see our teams get ranked. You become a Big Ten homer for a couple of nights.''
— Jaden on his hot shooting start
"It was a great start for me. I was in a rhythm from the beginning. It was a great start and we're just happy to get the win. My shooting, that's one thing I really worked hard on this summer, working on my three-point percentage and being a better shooter. I've just got to keep at it and keep helping my team win.''
— Jaden on offensive production
"I feel like we're playing amazing (offensively). We're taking the right shots, and we're getting the ball in the paint. If there's not something there, we're getting the ball to shooters. We've just got to keep playing good basketball.''
— Sasha on Jaden's growth in his second season
"Jaden is completely right. From one year to another, he's really grown into a great player. He's distributing more, and he's hitting threes and he's probably an all-league defensive player now, too. He's done a great job of not playing too fast and staying on two feet. He's been tremendous.''
— Jaden on expanding his game
"I think this summer I realized I had to be more than a scorer. I watch a lot of (Memphis Grizzlies guard) Ja Morant highlights, and I take notes from that and implement that stuff into my game. I've got guys like Sasha right there, guys who are great shooters. I know when I get them the ball, they're going to make shots.''
— Jaden on playing with USA Basketball Under-19 team this season
"I saw a lot of growth (with USA Basketball), especially on the defensive end. Just to make that team was amazing. It was great to represent your country and it was great for me and (Purdue freshman) Caleb Furst to be in that atmosphere. It was a great experience for both of us.''
— Jaden on going to prep school
"I just took it and ran with it, and it turned out super well for me. It was a fun year.''
— Sasha on being ranked No. 1
"Absolutely it would be a tremendous honor. We do have one more game to get through with Iowa, and we have to get over that first. That's our mindset going into it. Thinking big picture, there's been a lot of great teams and a lot of great coaches here. It's kind of surreal to be honest. It's a great position to be in.''
— Jaden on high expectations
"Having expectations for us being really good, that all comes along with it. We could be No. 1 coming after Friday, but we just focus on what we can control, working hard and playing for each other. We don't really look at the rankings, because we know it's 0-0 come March. We just want to keep getting better.''
— Jaden on a great November
"I think on Dec. 1, we've had a lot of good tests. With the Big Ten, there's going to be.a lot of tough tests and everybody is going to give us their best game. Whatever we've got to do, we're going to do it.''
— Sasha on improving
"You're seeing the strides and growth that's taking place in our own building. We're practicing harder now. We're a lot better than we were in that first scrimmage at Providence. And that's the goal, to just keeping getting better every day.''
— Sasha on starting Big Ten season
"You have to get ready for the gauntlet of our schedule now with the Big Ten coming up. Iowa is a great team, and they really come after you offensively. They're really experienced too, Keegan Murray is a great player, and (Jordan) Bohannon is an experienced player. We know what they do, and they know what we do, too. You're familiar with everybody in the Big Ten, and you have to take the fight to them.''
— Jaden on Iowa
"They've got some great pieces, and they're coming in undefeated. They have the same goals we have, competing for the Big Ten and making a run in the NCAA Tournament. We've just got to keep playing our game, like we've been doing.''
— Jaden on having fun playing
"It's just fun playing with these guys and this dude sitting besides me. When we win games like last night, it's just fun to be in the building.''
Watch the entire podcast with Sasha Stefanovic and Jaden Ivey
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