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Hustle’s Anthony Edwards Compares NBA Trash Talking To The Nasty Things He Says In The Adam Sandler Movie

Adam Sandler might be the star of the new Netflix movie Hustle, which is centered around Utah Jazz center Juancho Herangomez, but fans who are checking the basketball drama out on the streaming service (and there appears to be a lot of you) are walking away singing the praises of 20-year-old hoops phenom Anthony Edwards. Currently a shooting guard for the Minnesota Timberwolves, Edwards has a significant role in Hustle as the ultra-talented rookie standing in Hernangomez’s way as the player hustles (get it?) to make his way into the NBA Draft. And he’s great! Even though he has to play a real jerk.

Anthony Edwards’ Hustle character, Kermit Wilts, is the consensus number one pick in the movie’s draft, and he becomes a natural rivel to Bo (Juancho Hernangomez), Adam Sandler’s client in the film. As such, Kermit talks a LOT of trash to Bo when the two play each other. So during a series of interviews for Hustle, I asked Edwards if trash talk in the actual NBA is as bad as they make it out to be in the movie, and he told CinemaBlend:

I don’t think it goes that deep, no. I don’t think they get too disrespectful in the games. But in the movie, I get really disrespectful so, yeah, it’s crazy. … A lot of the things that I’m saying are over the line.

There’s a particular bit of talk that Kermit Wilts uses to get under Bo’s skin as they are competing, and it involves Bo’s wife and daughter – who you would think would be off limits. But Kermit knows no boundaries when he is trying to intimidate an opponent. Anthony Edwards, however, says that he never subscribed to all of that, even though he sees it in kids all of the time now. As he went on to tell CinemaBlend:

The kids that I see now, today, that’s like fifth grade or fourth grade, they’re talking trash. Like, we weren’t talking trash back then, but they’re talking trash already, because the game has evolved year after year after year. So, I mean, it’s getting pretty bad.

Anthony Edwards would know. He played SEC Basketball for the University of Georgia, and likely faced all levels of opposition before heading to the NBA as the first overall pick in the draft, and landing with the Minnesota Timberwolves. It’s refreshing to hear that trash talk isn’t THAT brutal in The League, because the things that Edwards says to Hernangomez got under MY skin, and I was just an audience member!

Still, Hustle is one of the best Netflix movies available on the streaming service at the moment, and the movie has been earning raves from critics ever since it landed online. Part of that might be because Hustle director Jeremiah Zagar borrowed from Martin Scorsese while filming his basketball scenes. It could also just be that audiences seem to like Sandler in dramatic roles, like Paul Thomas Anderson’s Punch-Drunk Love, which turns 20 years old this year

You can actually find Hustle playing in a few theaters, but it’s also available to stream as we speak, so dive in.

Sean O'Connell
Sean O'Connell

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. He's frequently found on Twitter at @Sean_OConnell. ReelBlend cohost. A movie junkie who's Infatuated with comic-book films. Helped get the Snyder Cut released, then wrote a book about it.