Introduction by Olliver Wolfe
Interview by Avery Thrasher
They say you can judge a man by his enemies. We’d like to add to that and say this: you can judge a man by his dogs. In fact, take it even further and say you can judge a man’s dogs by who their owner is. And based on those last two things, DeMarre Carroll is one hell of a man.
Nicknamed the “Junkyard Dog” for his fierce, razor-sharp game play, the Hawks’ Small forward has unswerving dedication to his two English Bulldogs as if they’re his own personal mascots. And, especially as of lately, the 6’8”, 212-pound titan has demonstrated that same attitude towards his own sport. Not that he didn’t bleed on his way to the top.
From living with liver disease to being shot in the ankle, Carroll pushed through it all to become a key player with the Hawks, snatching 24 points in a 2014 win against the New York Knicks. In fact, just in the past month, Carroll was named (along with four other starters) as Eastern Conference Player of the Month. So what’s the Birmingham native doing when he’s not tearing shots off the court? Kicking back and spending time with his dogs.
So what are the names of your dogs and why did you choose those names?
"Ah, we got Pluto and dream. Dream is the lazy one. I chose Pluto because he's white and I chose Dream because he's been with me everysince I've been trying to fulfill this dream of playing in the NBA."
Why do you like English Bulldogs?
"I wanted a dog that was relaxed and chilled. They kinda do the same things I do. They're really high maintenance, but they're great dogs"
What makes Pluto and Dream so special?
"They mean alot to me, they mean the world. These are the same dogs that when I have a tough games, I come home and they're there. They put a smile on my face. These dogs mean the world to me and I would'nt trade them for nothing."
How old are Pluto and Dream?
"Pluto is three years old. He's my youngest. He's the hyper one. He plays, runs around and jumps on everybody. Dream, he's five years old and is laid back. He's real lazy and chill. But all the girls seem to like Dream more than they like Pluto."
[Lol] Why is that?
"Well Dream looks innocent. Dream looks like the innocent, cute one. Yeah, he loves the girls and the girls love him."
Are Pluto and Dream your first dogs?
"Ah, no I had a dog before them. I had Siberian Husky named Kimo. I had him throuhout my childhood. He ran away on me, so I made sure to get some fat, slow dogs that couldn't get away from me [laughs]."
How old were you then when you had Kimo?
"I got him when I was 8 and I had him until I was 12. Unfortunately, he ran away on me."
Do you travel with your dogs?
"Yeah. If it's drivable, we use a driver. They usually travel everywhere, because they're fun to be around and they make you laugh. You can't go wrong with them."
Any plans on having any more dogs?
"Naw. I got one more dog, but she's at the house. My girl doesn't let me take her anywhere [laughs]. She's a Maltipoo and her name is Bella."
It seems like you're a dog lover at heart.
"Yeah, I'm a dog lover at heart. I think you can't go wrong with a dog."
Is there any special pampering that you do for them?
"Oh yeah, they get washed once a week and they get a massage like every two weeks. They take alot of vitamins for their coats. They are housedogs, so they get all the treats and pamering. You have to take good care of them. To me they're just like humans. I treat them just like I would want to be treated."
What are your feelings on adopting dogs that don't have homes?
"I think that's great! Adopting dogs is great thing to do. I think every dog needs a good home."
Photos: Lorenzo Smith Fotography