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Bits from Dennis Lindsey Interview, 4/26

April 27, 2013
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Where do the Jazz need to get better to take the next step?
Well, you know, it’s a good question, and I would say this. The team that we had last year, there were so many free agents that clearly you could mark inside depth as a strength as it relates to last year, but you know, that could potentially change.

So, you know, while we were a team that got the ball into the post and scored it efficiently in the paint, you know, you don’t want to mark that as a strength, as a given because you, you know, again, as I’ve mentioned before in the media, you know, Al [Jefferson] and Paul [Millsap] have both fully earned their right to unrestricted free agency, and you know, they could choose to play elsewhere.

So, really, you have to do a good job of projecting of what we have under contract, what’s available. You know, you have to do a very good job on supply of demand of the market, and so while strengths of this year and weaknesses this year could completely flop depending upon the personnel.

So, but I, the good news is, is that I do think we have a good story to tell. We have a lot of opportunity, you know, to show to free agents [that are] our own, and those that were outside the Jazz, so, and I’m confident that we can make sense, you know, of our current state of rebuild that we’re in.

What pleased you the most about Tyrone Corbin this year, and where did he progress the most?*
Yeah. Yeah. Thank you for the question.

You know, with Ty, there’s so many things. And I would, we, it’s real important during this rebuilding that our guys develop, that, you know, not only we, that we help them mature as players, we help mature as people.

I think clearly to a man in the exit interviews with the players, there’s a deep sense of trust in Ty that, you know, innately he tries to do the right thing by people.

And you know, you can, I don’t need to get into specific names, guys, but you know, you can, you guys probably off the top of your head could name a few coaches that, you know, whether it’s coaching them through the media, or throwing them under the bus, or, you know, creating subplots for their playing time to “get in their head.”

You know, I just, I don’t think Ty believes in that, and so, you know, all four, or really five or six of our young guys, had developed on time. Some development has been sped up now.

With all due respect, I understand there’s a big want by our fans that, you know, some of our young players play more, and you know, it’s a valid argument, but Ty really kept the locker room intact for over, you know, two and a quarter years now, and a lot of the games that we played in the last, you know, few seasons were meaningful, you know, to either just get in the Playoffs or this season, just fall out.

So I think his poise, his steady hand is, are also characteristics that have stood out.

* Dennis Lindsey told David Locke during locker cleanout (4/18) that there are things Tyrone Corbin did well and things he needs to improve on. He did not offer any details.

Locke was then asked on a 1280 show on 4/23 what Lindsey meant about areas where Corbin needs to improve. He could not or would not provide a response.

Randy Rigby was then asked on a 1280 show on 4/24 what Lindsey meant about areas where Corbin needs to improve. He could not or would not provide a response.

Craig Bolerjack was then asked on a 1280 show on 4/25 what Lindsey meant about areas where Corbin needs to improve. He could not or would not provide a response.

This interview would have seemed like the perfect opportunity to ask Lindsey about these areas where Corbin needs to improve. Instead, the 1280 guys just stopped at “What things did Tyrone Corbin do well?” Quelle surprise.

Big picture assessment of the season
I think, you know, we need to continue to build better defensive habits. We can’t hide, and run, from that. I think our inconsistency on the road was due to lack of discipline and tight habits, and you know, five men, you know, acting in unison as one unit, specifically, on the defensive side.

I think we shared the ball. I think the system that Coach [Jerry] Sloan, Coach [Phil] Johnson developed, that Ty’s carrying and putting his own stamp on, really teaches guys how to play.

I think this year we were 12th in assists, led in assist ratio, so the ball moves.

You know, I think one of the most obscure things that Al and Ty do not get enough credit for is Al’s very significant improvement with his passing. It’s almost, you know, guys that are more black hole-ish, you know, earlier in their career, they, many times, most often, do not develop into, you know, above average passers. And Al’s done a really good job of that, and I think the system and Ty deserves a lot of credit with that.

Is there a potential franchise player on the Jazz right now?
I think the way to answer that most appropriately is we’re gonna challenge all of them to be as great as they can be. And look, to build someone up, and they fall short, you know, you’ll create internal and external frustration with that.

You know, I don’t think anybody three or four years into John Stockton’s run here with the Jazz were gonna say, “Hey, you know, that is one of the three or four best point guards of all time.” If someone called that that soon, their ability to forecast is much greater than mine.

But through a very serious, dedicated, everyday type of work ethic, you know, John became that. And that’s the bar. And frankly, you know, Gordon [Hayward] and Alec [Burks] can’t run from the bar that John set here. Those are the expectations, and we need to fully embrace those.

And the same thing with the bigs. You know, Jeremy Evans needs to be all that he can be, and so does Enes [Kanter] and Derrick [Favors]. And I do think that all of them can have very significant roles in the league, and it’s our job and their job to come together and maximize their talent, and then I think at the end of the day we’ll feel good about those results.

Gregg Popovich modeled the Spurs after Jerry Sloan and the Jazz. How similar are the two organizations?
Yeah, so many. So many similarities, from really 10,000 feet.

And just, if you know Pop well, and you know, and I’m getting to know Coach Sloan just a little bit, just a few interactions and hope to get to know him well, and much deeper as we go on here, you could instantly see why Pop would gravitate towards, you know, the way the Jazz did things here for a long time. …

You know, the Spurs were very fortuitous to get, you know, two all-time greats in David Robinson and Tim Duncan to start the franchise, and then, you know, quite a few good decisions since then that maybe they don’t get enough credit for, you know, relative to how they procured those particular players.

But you know, it’s a real fundamental, no nonsense, come to work everyday, earn your keep, you know, get over yourself, you know, I think the way that the Millers really started the franchise is just, you know, this is a workman-like organization, you know, from the car dealerships and the theaters to the Fanzz stores, you know, there’s so many entities.

And especially in the Jazz, with what John and Karl [Malone] are on the bar that those guys established. So I can tell you guys, you know, knowing Pop well, it doesn’t surprise me all the stories, and then Pop’d be telling me the stories, you know, in particular, about his admiration of Coach Sloan and the way he ran his business.

On Kevin O’Connor’s mad scouting skillz and Derrick Favors
I really think, you know, looking back on old draft notes, Derrick was really misunderstood, you know, by the NBA scouting herd, and I think Kevin does not get enough credit for what he forecasted and the subtleties that he saw in Derrick.

You know, to a man, you talk to all the coaches, all the management-scout-people, right when I got here, and I wouldn’t know this unless you really touch a guy everyday, but he, Derrick really cares about the results. You know, if he’s in and the team didn’t go well in his eight-minute stint, you know, he’s steaming at the back of the bench.

Now, he’s not demonstrative and you know, he doesn’t, you know, carry himself and act like a fool when things don’t go his way, but you can feel the tension, you know, when he doesn’t like the results. And I think we can use that.

And you know, even if Derrick’s a quiet personality, I think he’s gonna need to demand things of his teammates on both, on how we prepare, and what the results of the game are when we play him.

** Dennis Lindsey UDQM: “I wouldn’t know this unless you really touch a guy everyday, but he, Derrick really cares about the results. You know, if he’s in and the team didn’t go well in his eight-minute stint, you know, he’s steaming at the back of the bench.” (1280)

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10 Comments leave one →
  1. modernagejazz permalink
    April 27, 2013 11:35 pm

    On the media thing, I will say this. Regardless what I thought of Ty as a coach, if I were Lindsey I would never go on record to adress his weaknesses to a public whose sentiment it “fire Ty”. That would be completely unprofessional.

    Perhaps those guys should have asked and made Lindsay answer this. But if Dennis answered the question honestly, that would be even worse than the so maligned “throwing former players under the bus” narrative we’ve seen happen sometimes.

    • April 28, 2013 3:17 am

      I agree with you on this, as a general rule of thumb. What I’m getting at though is that Lindsey is being portrayed in all of these interviews as someone that recognizes fans’ concerns about Ty’s flaws because he talked about what these flaws are–when he never did any such thing.

      • modernagejazz permalink
        April 28, 2013 4:25 am

        I see. I don’t really mind that, because I don’t listen their BS for Jazz coverage, I read your stuff instead. :)

  2. April 27, 2013 11:53 pm

    My thoughts:

    – I’ve never seen Lindsey, KOC, Randy, etc. praise Ty much for his basketball acumen. It’s always character, keeping the team together, etc. I don’t doubt either one.

    – The sentiment also seems to be it’s not fair to compare Ty to Sloan. However, there’s no problem holding Hayward and Burks to Stockton’s standards. The hell?

    – Also, nobody was putting him into the HOF yet, but when Stockton was finally given the starting PG job in his fourth year, he nearly broke the APG record that was just set by Isiah Thomas.

    – Kanter and Favors need to be all that they can be? Then let them.

    • Nathan permalink
      May 3, 2013 4:26 pm

      yes it will be interesting to see how Lindsey sets expectations as he gradually takes over. the expectations he sets and the ways in which is enforces, encourages, and ensures those expectations are met, in coaching, player development, and drafting/signing will define his career here. hopefully he understands fans don’t want a politically correct guy who never rocks the boat. please, rock the goddamn boat.

  3. Drugstore Cowboy permalink
    April 28, 2013 1:53 am

    Why is the interviewer thanked immediately for asking a question that is phrased in such a way to allow only a positive answer on Ty’s performance?

  4. Alec permalink
    April 28, 2013 2:02 am

    The Jazz Front Office members are talking and talking “ah” “eh” “uhm” “you know” “yeah” and talking and talking and virtually saying nothing, strictly nothing. regularly they leave an impression of incompetent politicians.

  5. May 4, 2013 12:50 am

    To your point about criticisms of Corbin…

    I just realised that the criticisms of Corbins rotations and failure to play the younger players more are currently being given more validity by a playoff team that had a similar team makeup (mix of capable and terrible veterans with promising youngsters), but took pretty much the exact opposite approach to his team as Ty Corbin. Starting a rookie and a second year player all season, starting the best veterans, using the capable vets off the bench and bannishing the others to the end of the bench. That team was no better than the Jazz on paper, in fact in a lot of ways it was worse. Yet they finnished sixth and are now heading to the second round of the playoffs.

    The fact that that team is coached by Mark Jackson makes me violently ill, but their success is an indictment of coach Corbin and the entire strategy and philosphy of the Jazz front office over the last two+ years.

    • May 4, 2013 9:10 am

      This was my response to someone that made a similar point on Twitter:

      Insult to injury, salt in the wound, lemon juice in the paper cut.

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