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Preseason Game 1 of 8: Utah Jazz vs. Portland Trail Blazers (1-0)

October 8, 2014

enes-3-f ÜÇLÜK!!!

Pre-Game Quotage
** Quin Snyder on why he moved shootaround to the practice facility
There’s more baskets. It gives us a chance to get more shooting. We’re here all the time anyway, so in a lot of respects, it’s, you know, it’s an easier routine. You know, a number of reasons. We wanted to go at 11 [a.m.], so we don’t have to be off the court right away at 11 when the visiting team comes in, so there’s just some conveniences. Not that we’ll always use the whole hour, but it gives us some flexibility.
** Snyder on Gordon Hayward
One of the most important things for him is to have perspective, and understand that, you know, his opportunity, to me, lies in something as simple as passion. He’s got so many different types of skills. If he just lets it out, and is not afraid to make a mistake…Instead of having a list and saying, “Gordon, do this, do this, do this, do this,” just play with passion. Not just hard, but, like, play with juice. Like, if people were watching the game, let’s let them say, “Man, Gordon loves to play.”
** Snyder on Alec Burks and Derrick Favors
Alec is a guy, he’d be the other guy, along with Fav, that I feel like has just shown a thirst.

snyder tendrilDid Quin Snyder intentionally and meticulously place this tendril of hair? Yes or no?

** Gordon Hayward on how this team will play with injuries mounting and only 17 guys available
Who’s injured?
Rodney [Hood]; Ian [Clark]; Carrick [Felix].
Oh, okay. Yeah. I mean, that’s what happens in training camp. You know, people get bruised up a little bit. You know, it’s unfortunate, but they’ll get better. We’ll be all right.
** Hayward, asked if he’s still the union rep for the team
I don’t know about tha–we haven’t talked about that. Last year, I was the backup or whatever, so. I don’t know…They were trying to groom me for the role.
Do you have any thoughts on the new TV deal? Were you involved in any talks to prepare players?
I was not really involved in any of that, so. Maybe Dahntay Jones or Steve Novak might’ve been more involved.

enes mouthpiece

** Trey Burke on how much of the offense has been installed, or has the focus been completely on defense
Yeah, I think, you know, they’re emphasizing, you know, both sides of the court. Mainly defense, though. But I think on the offensive end, we’re playing with much more pace, so you know, a lotta times we’re playing, you know, out of our reads. It’s not just a stagnant offense, or you know, it’s not robotic. You know, we’re going off of what we see out there, so you know, it should be exciting tonight to see where we are. You know, Portland’s a good team, and you know, I think we’re ready for the challenge.
** Burke on what he personally worked on the most this off-season
I think just getting in the paint more. You know, developing my shot, or, allowing it to be more consistent. Getting in the paint, making reads for myself and for others, and I think the more that I get in the paint and not settle for jump shots, the more it opens, you know, things up for other guys and you know, myself at times. So, as well as attacking in transition. You know, not being as conservative as I was last year, but attacking; trying to get in the paint.
** Burke on Quin Snyder
He’s a coach you can relate to. You know, he comes to me a lot after practice, during practice and sometimes calls me just to let me know what he sees and things that I can work on and that I con–can continue to improve on. So, he’s definitely a guy I can relate to and you know, I’m excited playing for him.


Post-Game Quotage
** Quin Snyder on the game
I thought we were a little nervous at the beginning of the game…I thought that we definitely played hard, particularly at the beginning of the second half, and I thought we tried to do a lot of things we’ve been talking about. You know, it’s not realistic to expect too much right now, to be honest with you, but I think there was a real focus to try to play the way we want to play.
** Snyder on how well the team played defense
Adequate. You know, I think there was a real effort. Again, I don’t wanna, you know, I’m pleased with much of what we did defensively. It’s just, you know, it’s a long road, and we reminded Rudy [Gobert] that we’re in a slightly di–he’s not supposed to be up on the floor like he is with the French national team. I want him back near the basket where he’s blocking shots…Rudy had a great summer. I’m kidding, obviously. And you know, he’s an impactful player around the basket, and did a good job changing shots. He’s a perfect example of a guy that, I mean, his habits will continue to improve. I think that’s true of all of us as a group.
** Snyder on Dante Exum’s performance
I thought he was a 19-year-old rookie. You know, there were some good things. You know, I liked his spirit. I felt like he didn’t get discouraged about anything that, there, you know, he got challenged by some guards that are quick, physical. You know, Steve Blake’s been doing that in the NBA for a long time and is a heck of a defender. So, for him to have to play against that is great.
** Snyder on how the team shared the ball
I felt like we were unselfish. We just didn’t, maybe we didn’t make some shots that, you know, off the assists. There was a number of plays I thought that we didn’t convert. There’s one that comes to mind when Trey drove and you know, he and Enes [Kanter] connected and Enes was in a great position, spacing-wise, that he really hadn’t been in previously. So I think when we continue to find those situations, we’ll get more efficient executing, and I thought Trey did a terrific job running the team.

kaman tweet

** Derrick Favors on what Enes Kanter’s range can mean for this offense
Get me more assists…I told him I was gon do it, you know, if I get the ball on the pick and roll or anything, you know, if they guy, if their guys come in and try to take the roll away, you know, I’m always looking at the corner, always looking out the corner of my eye to the perimeter, just trying to find the open guy. And you know, Enes guy came in and helped. So I saw him in the corner, and I just hit him with the pass, and he hit the shot for me, gave me the assist.

** Enes Kanter on the win
I know it’s the preseason, but just getting that game, winning that game and come in this locker room and just seeing the smiles on people’s face, it’s just priceless.
** Kanter on being in a happy locker room and getting to play basketball again
Oh man, I want that feeling long time…I think we have some–really have something special here. I mean, this team can get along really good and can be a really, really good friends, and that friendship can, we can show them on the court. So, I think it’s really important. I mean, all the basketball stuff, okay, it’s important…but friendship and the communication I think the most important thing. And then I think we gonna have really good friendships in this team.
** Kanter on his new defensive focus
[Last year], I was really focused on [offense]. But now this year, with coach Q’s, you know, defensive mind, I’m really focused on defense because, I mean, somebody’s gonna score the ball…But I think the most important thing, just going out there, and just stop that ball. So, like, gives you a really good feeling.

jody tweet

** Gordon Hayward on his comfort level in the new system and if he enjoys it
Yeah, it’s getting there. There’re times where it’s fun out there, and you know, when you play with the pass and you’re running and it’s easy, that, you, the, I mean, when you have an open guy make an open pass, and cut through and he makes another pass, and somebody gets a layup, a dunk, a wide-open shot, it makes the game a lot easier. It slows it down even though you’re going fast.

** Trey Burke on his performance
The game has just slowed down a little for me. You know, I tried to find my shot out there tonight. You know, it was a little off, but you know, I think the shots that I took were good shots. But it’s slowed down for me. It’s not as fast as it was last year. You know, I’m not in such a hurry out there, and I can see, you know, I can make plays for others as well as myself out there at a higher level.

** Dante Exum on his first taste of [preseason] NBA basketball
Came [in] a bit nervous. You know, I came in and tried to, I think I held my own. You know, just still finding my feet a bit and where I can get my opportunities, but you know, I’m always trying to do as much effort as I can on the defensive end.

Random Stuff, etc.
** People calling Toure Murry “Torrey”: Craig Bolerjack (H/T @5kl)
** I’ll take “Images That Are Unrecognizable as Utah Jazz Ticket Ads” for $200, Alex.

lbj ticket

** Armless Al may be no more, but his armless crew has grown:

** Meanwhile, in Louisiana, Karl Malone got his first kill of the season (via @mamail):

Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines of the Night (UDQM)
** Media on off-season and other teams being in the playoffs: You’re eager and anxious for this thing to get going.
Gordon Hayward: I am.
Media: Did you watch? I know some guys don’t want to watch.
Hayward: It’s one of those things where a lot of my friends watch, so I’ll go over to somebody’s house…It’s like a social thing, I guess.
** Quin Snyder on Rodney Hood’s injury: Yeah, he did something to it last night. Had a little pull.
** Matt Harpring: McCollum’s a nice player that can go both ways with his hands.
** Steve Brown on Rudy Gobert losing a contact lens: That’s what it was, was the ball hitting him in the eye.
** Harpring: I’m not sure if Steve Blake was outside that restricted area.
Craig Bolerjack: Goes back to the muscle, though, right here.
Harpring: Well, he was outside. I thought he was moving though.
** Harpring on Quin Snyder: He’s gonna fill–fit in nicely here in Salt Lake.
** Boler: You have to push through the hump. (H/T @5kl)
** Snyder on his post-game interview setup: I’ve got a nice seat and a big mic.
** Dante Exum on not overthinking: It’s, you know, it’s getting hard, but you know, I’m trying to work through it and it’s working for me, so.

Utah Jazz vs. Portland Trail Blazers: Opponent Game Thread Highlights

October 8, 2014
tags: ,

Today’s Opponent Game Thread host: Blazers Edge.

This game is televised on Root Sports in Utah.
Why are we not going to be televising the games but Utah is?

by Mattco26 on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:03 PM

I would like to know this as well.
I can only assume the answer is greed.

by heybabydrinkyourmilk on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:12 PM

Jazz trying to pull Lopez out of the paint in the early going by letting Favors/Kanter shoot 15-footers.
by Roy Wonder on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:13 PM

They using a tractor?
by occassia on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:14 PM

Very sloppy start by the Blazers.

by Roy Wonder on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:17 PM


by nawesemo on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:17 PM

now the story about the Jazz signing the ill kid, very classy
by BlazersConga on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:23 PM

It was just because the Bobcats forced them to match tho
by Mortimer on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:24 PM

How many blocks does Gobert have?
by Y5k on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:32 PM

by KingWes on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:32 PM

3 and to the 4
by KingWes on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:32 PM

4 blocks 3 blocks 2 blocks 1
Your blocked he’s blocked no blocks none

by KingWes on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:32 PM

This guy ain’t no mother freaking frenchie
I know everything he’s gonna do against me!

by KingWes on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:33 PM

Wow and they call our announcers homers
that guy just compared Alec Burks to Jordan…

by BlazersConga on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:43 PM

Kaman just made Turkish play-doh out of Kanter.
by ParticleAccelerator on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:48 PM

How is Turkish play doh different from normal play doh
by KingWes on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:49 PM

by Y5k on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:50 PM

That’s the one.

by ParticleAccelerator on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:50 PM

by Mortimer on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:51 PM

The Jazz bigs have funny ways of walking
Derrick Favors his right leg
Enes Kanters

by KingWes on Oct 7, 2014 | 6:56 PM

Jazz announcers really like talking crap about the Blazers, they are at it again! lol
by BlazerSkins on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:01 PM

Hope they are still talking crap when we play in the regular season
And we are 27-7 and they are 3-24

by KingWes on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:02 PM

and paying Hayward’s max contract
by BlazerSkins on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:04 PM

Wow that was terrible defense.
by ParticleAccelerator on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:06 PM

And a terrible call
by tyeforshee on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:07 PM

man we look terrible on both ends
by LeGarrette Blount’s Right Fist on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:06 PM

Burks is really a headache
by bowdown on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:06 PM

bad bad bad bad bad bad bad
by LeGarrette Blount’s Right Fist on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:24 PM

oh my god
it’s the jazz

by WillBartonMVP on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:33 PM

Hayward is gonna try to justify his max contract in the preseason
He will go back to sucking in the regular season

by KingWes on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:37 PM

by WillBartonMVP on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:38 PM

Blazers didn’t look good in preseason last year either
by tp90 on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:40 PM

Exactly. And don’t forget tv adds 10 lbs too
by Slinger81 on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:40 PM

by ParticleAccelerator on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:41 PM

My wife calls Meyers Pretty Boy. But I don’t Big Sexy will stick with her for Kaman.
by BlazerFanSince1970 on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:43 PM

Kaman’s an acquired taste.
Give it time.

by ParticleAccelerator on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:45 PM

My wife liked Przy
She thinks Meyers looks like a child in a huge body.

by Eat Politicians on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:45 PM

is booty banned in Utah?
by nawesemo on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:43 PM

No. John Stockton inspired short-shorts are very much encouraged
by Slinger81 on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:46 PM

Is that slang for caffeine?
by Timmay! on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:47 PM

everything is banned in Utah
by Eat Politicians on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:46 PM

You can have all the wives you want …
by Berkeley on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:52 PM

Also guns
What could possibly go wrong?

by occassia on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:54 PM

And apparently you can trade one for the other in some circles
by Slinger81 on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:55 PM

these comments are the only good part of this game
by HJprobs on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:43 PM reply

Matt Harpring:
“Let me tell you my top 8 but not in order. I’ll start with the eighth seed, then the first, then the third, then the fourth, then the seventh, then the second, then the sixth, and then the eight again.\n\n

by sabonis11 on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:47 PM

“Damon Lillard”
by sabonis11 on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:48 PM

“CJ McCullum”
by Reasonable Approximation on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:49 PM

“Will Beer-toon”
This is fun!

by Corwin71 on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:50 PM

Is Harpring illiterate? How can you possibly make that mistake?
by KingWes on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:51 PM

Kaman great drive. Whoops I mean Big Sexy
by BlazerFanSince1970 on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:50 PM

I wonder if Kaman hunts elk like he posts up.
by ParticleAccelerator on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:51 PM

Are we calling Kaman “Big Sexy” now?
Cause the dude is kinda ugly. Going for an ironic thing?

by Corwin71 on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:51 PM

He has a beautiful soul.
by annthefan on Oct 7, 2014 | 7:53 PM

isn’t that guy like 50 years old?

by Eat Politicians on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:01 PM

Ugh…god damned streaming site auto-downloaded malware on my computer…
by WillBartonMVP on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:02 PM

The Utah Announcers?
by tyeforshee on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:03 PM

Well done.
by ParticleAccelerator on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:04 PM

Why does Stotts hate Claver so much?
by sabonis11 on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:03 PM

Tapas killed his parents

by Eat Politicians on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:04 PM

Where’s Biedrins? He plays for Utah, yes?
by ParticleAccelerator on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:03 PM

Oh well
Maybe next season guys and gals!

by Mortimer on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:18 PM

Oh thank God it’s over
by sabonis11 on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:20 PM

We lost a pre-season game. We’re doomed!
by BlazerFanSince1970 on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:20 PM

we’ll show ‘em on Thursday!
by BlazersConga on Oct 7, 2014 | 8:20 PM

Bits from the Open Scrimmage

October 7, 2014
tags: , ,

One. Alec Burks for president.


Two. People calling Utah “great city of Utah”: Dante Exum

Also, people following in the footsteps of the great Karl Malone: Dante Exum

Three. Is that…


Four. 4A and 4B here.

4A is Gordon Hayward trying to get Quin Snyder into the rookie dance-off (Hayward was rejected).

dance off tweets

4B is the dance-off itself. Real talk: No rookie dance-off can ever live up to the legend that was Kyrylo Fesenko vs. Kosta Koufos. This one, so poorly orchestrated by the vets, doesn’t even deserve to be mentioned in the same breath. *sad face*

Five. Perfect end to the game (scrimmage):

Post-Scrimmage Quotage
** Quin Snyder on Gordon Hayward’s invitation to him to participate in the dance-off
It was very kind of him, but I had to politely decline, so. Appreciate him thinking of me.
** Quin Snyder on whether he anticipates playing a lot of guys in tomorrow’s game
Yeah, I think it’s important right now to, you know, we, not at the expense of our growth, but you know, there’s, it’s the first game, and you know, we’ll try to get a good feel, and, but you’ll probably see some other people get an opportunity to play.

** Derrick Favors on adjusting to Quin Snyder’s transition defense
When he came here f–at the beginning of the year, and he said he want us to get back on transition defense and wanted the bigs to go after offensive boards and get back, I was like, “Coach, that’s a lot.” But you know, repetition, doing it in practice, and you know, it carried over to tonight, and hopefully it can carry over to tomorrow in the game.

** Gordon Hayward on where the team is at right now
I think we’re definitely better than when we first came in. You know, I, there’s still, at times out there where, this is what, the first time for us to be in front of fans, and s–you can s–you can tell some of that. We didn’t, we weren’t as sharp as we are in practice. Guys forget where they need to be. You know, we’re not executing like we should. And I think that’s to be expected. So I think hopefully we can learn from that today and be better tomorrow. You know, this preseason will be a chance for us to really grow and maybe get all the kinks out.
** Hayward on the dance-off
This is the weakest dance-off I think I’ve ever seen. It was terrible. But, the fact that JP was in it and won, makes it a little better, so.

** Dante Exum, asked if he was holding back on his best dance moves because he didn’t want to outshine JP
Yeah, yeah. You know, like, when he came on the court as well, I didn’t want to go too hard at him, but nah. It was just good fun. I know Rodney [Hood] was over there shy, so I didn’t want to go full out.*
Were you really holding back, or are you just saying that?
Oh, I’m just saying that. Definitely.
** Exum on where the team is
I think we’re in a good place. Coach has put in a lot of good stuff,* and throughout the training camp there’s been so many times where different players show, like, highlights of their game, and you know, if we all put our, put that together, and put it in our games, then we’re gonna have a really good season. (KALL)

Were Trey Burke’s nude pictures really “old pictures”? (SFW)

October 6, 2014

“They were old pictures.” — Trey Burke on Media Day, regarding his nude pictures.

trey mirrorvia RomeIsBurning

How old is old? Let’s follow the ink trail.

As seen below, Burke did not have the Michigan block “M” with the “96” behind it at the time of the rookie photo shoot (July 2013), but was sporting it by the time Media Day (September 2013) rolled around.

via Getty Images

In the second pic, there’s a clear area below the M-96 tat.

That clear area was still there during the last game of the 2013-2014 season. Three weeks into the off-season, the area was filled with new ink.

trey se via Getty Images, @tb614_

Conclusion: The leaked/hacked/whatever pics are no more than five months old (four months at the time they were posted on Tumblr). Of course, “old” is relative.

P.S. You can’t say this whole thing has not affected the team. Take a gander at how covered up Enes Kanter, who in summers past was not shy about showing skin, has become (RIP Fun Enes):

never nude enes

Bits from Dennis Lindsey Interview, 10/3

October 6, 2014
tags: , , ,


On good shots, open shots and passing up shots
If you honor the kick-out off the penetration, guess what? The next time you drive in there, you’re gonna have even more space. But there is a dilemma that we have be very aware of, of the not taking an open shot, a good shot. The ball swings, and it swings to a guy that has, now, the ball in a late-clock situation with an NBA defense closing on him.*

There’s something cast up; poor, long rebound and they’re running downhill atcha. It’s, in effect, when you do not take a good, open shot, in my opinion, it’s just like not getting back on defense, ’cause that’s really what it leads to: numbers going back the other way.

So, to have a young team have that pulse of when the right shot appears, and the ball finding the right guy, is, there’s a little magic there and we’re going to certainly have to grow that.

* i.e. the most common explanation for Gordon Hayward’s low shooting percentage last year, and C.J. Miles before him.

How can this team improve schematically under Quin Snyder on the defensive end?
I think Quin has got an audience right now that’s really motivated to listen, ’cause they all understand the need for not improvement; for great improvement in those areas. And so then, with Quin specifically, it’s been clear-cut.

If you do not run back, you won’t be in the game. And not that you won’t get back in the game, but you’ll be told that you didn’t ro–run back and wall to the ball, if you will, if you’re a big guy. And so, there’s just going to be some non-negotiables, if you will, that it will be very understood that the accountability on the defensive end is gonna be really high.

We may be disorganized because of our youth, but we won’t be disorganized and discombobulated because of our effort.

When going up against tough, veteran clubs, can this team answer the physical challenge?
Certainly, there’s times where last year, a few of our young guys got buried in the paint. And when you do not have the experience to deal with that, there, it’s just, it’s fight or flight. Are you going to, are you gonna fight? Are you going to back down? And so, that’s going to be a real personal question…

Frankly, our, it’s become a pick-and-roll league, where there’s 70, 80 pick and rolls, many times, run in a game. And so, a lotta times, the physicality, it has to do with the point guards just getting hit.

And so, one thing that we’re really emphasizing here, where we’re actually using this terminology, is, “How hard are you going to compete after you get hit with a screen on a pick and roll?” And really, that resolve, our ability to compete after the screen, will largely determine how much we’re able to improve this year defensively.

This is in no way, shape or form a knock on Tyrone Corbin at all, but how difficult is it to unteach “traditional” basketball learnings?
Yeah, I’ll stay away from that, ’cause, look, you know how it is. And we try to be very classy with our decisions.

Cavaliers coach David Blatt said today he plans to rest LeBron James at times this season to prepare for the playoffs. The Spurs have done this as well. Where is the line between competition and entertainment, when fans may be buying tickets to see a specific player play?
I’m actually glad you asked the question, because, look. The public needs to hear internal rationale on this issue, in my opinion…

[Former MLB manager] Jim Leyland came and spoke to a lot of us in Chicago at a coaching clinic a few weeks ago, and he addressed this. And he had a philosophy that he was gonna give many of his Sundays off in baseball, and to his veteran players, he’d give ‘em those players off ’cause he felt like their energy would be low. They would appreciate the day off and the guys that weren’t the primary players, they would be hungry.

So he felt like the results were very good inside of that situation for a lotta different reasons. And he’d say, “Hey, look, I did get asked by fans and media–” And he said, “All I can do is apologize that you’re not getting to see Barry Bonds, maybe, on that particular Sunday in Pittsburgh.”

But you have to keep the long-term interest in mind, even, so there’s, for one, your player health. Mental health, physical health, and there’s not ever been a player that has played any sport that doesn’t need time off. Time off to reflect, decompress, physically recover.

And frankly, that’s one of the best things that Gregg Popovich does. I was just talking–we had management meetings–and Pop understands the difference between zero hours off and 24 hours off, and 24 to 48. And many times he’ll schedule an off-day–Jim Leyland would do the same thing–before they would have a day off. That way, he could have a 48- or a, you know, a 60-hour window of rest and recovery.

And what you get from your players is, is “Hey, this guy is thinking about my health, and my well-being.” So you get a very motivated player coming back that really believes in the message, but more importantly, believes in the person, because he’s taking care of him.

So, you, it’s always that struggle, and look, it is very regrettable that the night that you bring your young kid to a game–I’ve been there with my sons–that a player is hurt or resting. But if you’re looking at it from a coaching standpoint, pro-active health management, if you really study it at deep levels, works.

So by giving him off strategic dates, you can say, yeah, he’s missing those dates so you’re not as competitive and the father and son don’t get see that player perform. But what if, and I think you can prove this a little bit, that it saves a player on the backend of the season or the backend of his career a la Tim Duncan?

No one’s ever played basketball at 38 like Tim Duncan** has, in my opinion. And now, there’s 200 dads and sons that get to see Tim play longer. Or John [Stockton] and Karl [Malone] play longer. What did Coach [Jerry] Sloan do [with] John Stockton at the 8-minute mark? He was coming out. Well, believe me, Gregg Popovich studied that, and replicated that, and I think with good rationale. (1280)

* Hopefully after this, Jazz-owned media can stop their holier-than-thou complaining at every given opportunity about Pop resting players.
** No CENTER, maybe. Click to enlarge:

tim vs karl

P.S. Note these are Tim Duncan’s stats as a 37-year-old. Let’s revisit this at the end of next season.

Enes Kanter for 3! Assist, Brad Jones.

October 5, 2014
tags: ,


enes-3.3 H/T @DJJazzyJody and @tribjazz

P.S. Enes was nowhere to be found when the team went to a haunted house later in the day…unless he went in costume (via @dee_bost).


Quick Hit Odds and Ends

October 4, 2014

One. Andrei Kirilenko cut his hair. Finally! I’ve only been waiting for this for four years lol. (Note AK’s little Masha harem behind him.)


Two. A rare look at the serious side of Kyrylo Fesenko: He’s trying to make the Timberwolves roster so he can bring his mom, wife and other family members over from Ukraine.

He is a half-world away from a home he last visited in August, but he’s reminded of the conflict every time he thinks of a neighbor who was killed when a Malaysia Airlines jet mistakenly was shot down over the country in July.

“It was really tragic. That’s when it actually finally hit me that it’s for real,” Fesenko said. “That it’s not somewhere out there.” …

He was asked if it was unsettling to watch his country being split by the crisis.

“It is. I think war is the outdated solution to any conflict,” said Fesenko, a 2007 second-round pick by Philadelphia who was traded to Utah and played four seasons for the Jazz. He hasn’t played regularly in the NBA since 2011. “It’s just ridiculous and stupid and I’m very worried about my mom, my wife, all my friends. Two of my friends already enlisted in the army and I really don’t want that to happen. I’m all up for fighting the good cause, but I just don’t want to lose any of my childhood friends.”

Three. (At least partially) why practice was canceled on Thursday:

snyder baby

Four. Rudy Gobert wants everyone to know that six inches isn’t that big.

rudy 6

Five. What a difference a year makes.

2013 2014 coaches

Bits from Practice, 10/3

October 4, 2014
tags: , ,

** Quin Snyder on yesterday’s canceled practice (and the arrival of his baby): It worked out well. Alec told me that I should have more children so they get more days off.
** Snyder on Rodney Hood’s shot
I think the biggest thing for Rodney is to be confident, that we want him to take open shots. And if he’s open, it’s a good shot. I don’t care how many he’s missed or made.
** Snyder on training camp goals
Our goal is to get better throughout the year, and try to get better each day. It sounds like a little bit of a cliche,* but if we can do it, it’d be a good thing.

* If only he knew. LOL.

** Derrick Favors, asked if Steve Novak is providing leadership
Yeah, he always talking, always saying stuff and you know, he always get us going even before practice. You know, he come in, talking, bring a lot of energy when he out there, and you know he help us out a lot.
** Favors on whether Novak talks a lot of junk when he makes shots
Novak? Yeah, he might say a couple words after he make a jumper, ’cause everybody know he can shoot but somehow he still get open. And you know, everybody be mad, like, “Hey, why would you leave Novak open?” And he’ll just start talking, so he’ll say a couple things.
** Favors, asked if he knows Rodney Hood from AAU
I don’t know…We probably played against each other, but to tell you the truth, I don’t know.*

* Rodney Hood on draft night: Derrick Favors, I played against him back in high school…He was a senior in high school. I was a small kid. You know, he was, so he probably doesn’t remember me.

** Steve Novak on who’s played well so far
You know, the big guys have played well. You know, D-Fav and Enes [Kanter], today, specifically has shot the ball really well from the perimeter. Enes, I think, hit two threes in practice. You know, D-Fav has just done a good job using his body and scoring the ball. And Gordon [Hayward], I think, is just, to me, the thing that stands out is how physical he is, how strong he is. I think, just, he’s just stronger than I thought.

** Dante Exum on what he’s learned from Trey Burke
Yeah, you know, it’s been really good. You know, coming into practice everyday against a good-caliber point guard, you know, and just, it’s giving me an opportunity to learn, you know? That’s why I put myself in this situation so I can get better everyday, and you know, Trey’s helped me with that.

** Trey Burke on whether he feels better prepared for this season than last season
You know, I know what to expect coming this year. You know, last season it was kinda like, you know, you come into a league full of grown men and you don’t really know what to expect. You hear about the 82 games, but your body’s not used to it. So you know, I definitely think, you know, I’m more prepared this year. I know how to prepare, you know, for practice and prepare for games better.

Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines (UDQM)
** Derrick Favors on the rest day: I think we needed it. We been going for a long time, and you know, I think coach just wanna give us a, let our bodies recup[erate].
** Dante Exum on what’s been an adjustment: It’s just how hard everybody goes, each and every day. You know, there’s no second off. And if you do take a second off, coach is on you in a heartbeat.
** Trey Burke on Exum: He’s kinda, like, in the position I was in last year, lotta stuff coming at him.
** Quin Snyder on wanting the ball to break the paint: If there’s one fewer guy, you know, one fewer man in there, it’s good.

Bits from Randy Rigby Interview, 10/1

October 3, 2014
tags: ,


Spencer Checketts: Randy! Knock knock.
Randy Rigby: Who’s there?
Checketts: Interrupting cow.
Rigby: Interrupting cow? Who?*
Checketts: Hahaha. That was my joke.

* To anyone wondering why it doesn’t say “Interrupting cow who?”: “Interrupting cow? Who?” is how Randy responded.

What have you observed in the first few practices?
You know, I’ve seen a number of practices, and I’ll tell you. This is as good as I have ever seen us in preparation and in work ethic, in planning, in strategy.

Quin [Snyder] has done a masterful job of, really, preparing his coaching staff, coming into it with game plans, and with, really, tight schedules.

He is, he’s pushing his staff, he’s pushing these players, and he’s establishing the expectation level right off the get-go of what we’re expecting offensively and defensively, and holding players accountable. And as issues arise, he’s not afraid to stop, regardless of who it is, and talk about it, and not only point out what was wrong, but why it’s wrong.

And I think that’s important, is, you’re not only telling what to do, but why we’re doing it. And so, there’s very good training going on and I’ve been very impressed with the intensity.

We understand that Quin has gotten after players pretty good in the first few practices, especially Dante Exum.
Well, you know what, and he’s doing that. Exactly right. He, and he is, he’s got on him really good, but, and what I’ve liked him doing is, just an example, is he says, “Okay. No, here’s what you’re doing wrong. I’ve talked about this. We’ve talked about this. You still did it wrong, and because you did it wrong, you’re gonna have to run.”

And then he says, “Now, whoever wants to run with Dante, get to the line.” And so it’s, you know what, you see your teammate, do I run with him? And then they do a sprint. And he made it very clear to him, “You know what? Until we get it right, then we’ll run until we’re willing to accept this.”

And i–yeah, you know what, he is no respecter of persons. Everyone on this team is expected to do a job and to be held accountable, and that’s the messaging he’s sending out to our players.

Dante Exum has worked hard, but does he really know what’s coming?
I don’t think Dante totally understands the degree of what’s coming. And I’ll tell you, when you start looking at, i–whether he’s playing the “one” or the “two” position, and you start thinking about every team that’s coming through here, and then who he’s gonna guarding each and every night, that’s a monumental task.

And it comes as a constant wave. And you don’t have time to feel sorry for yourself or get over it because you’re playing the next night or two nights later, someone almost equally if not better than who you played the night before. And that’s something that you’re just, you know what, you just have to go through it.

You have to experience it. And he’s gonna have a real learning curve this year, but the thing I’m happy with is the mindset of, the character that I’ve seen, the personality that I’ve seen with this young man.

He is really a pleasant individual to be around. He enjoys life. He has a good outlook on life. He has a confidence in himself, but in, not an over-confidence. He’s, he is a, he’s a humble young man that’s willing to learn, and wants to be in this game, in the long haul, has very, very good upbringing and very good parents.

Randy Rigby’s weekly report on Gordon Hayward’s marriage
I think he has got to the point where he is much more mature, physically and mentally, on, I think being married now, has also brought him to a new dimension in his life, and a stability in his life.

What do you hope to see out of this team by Christmas/New Year’s?
Well, you know, I, number one, as we all look at the schedule, I’ll tell you what. November is a brutal, tough schedule, and I, I’m, there’s gonna be some hot–hard-fought games in there. But I’m hoping to see, and then, then come December, the schedule gets a little better, for us.

But besides just wins and losses, which I’m really hopeful that we see an improvement over last year what our win-loss record was in November and December, so that’s one there that I would hope to see, I’ve ho–I’d like to see our players settling in to really, total buy-in, to our offense and defensive system, and now fine-tuning it to where they’re really using it to help us not only compete, but actually maybe win some of those games that last year we just didn’t, we weren’t able to go over the hump with.

So I would hope that we can see some real improvement with our players accepting and then implementing this new offense and defense, and really the team buying into it to a point now, they’re starting to have fun and it’s starting to come, instead of thinking about it, both offensively and defensively, that it coming, starting to come natural to them in how they’re playing.

What did you tell the players about your expectations when you addressed them?
I talked about, one of the things we’ve started a couple years now is respecting our country and the flag. And our players have been very responsive to that in standing and putting their hands over their heart, and that’s an initiative that we’ve felt very important.*

And we also dealt with the personal issues of what we do as a team in standing behind one another, and, for the good and the bad. Yes, we’re gonna hold everyone accountable.

At the same time, we’re also in this for one another, and to have a care, and empathy, and stand behind our teammates and lift them when they’re down, and when we have challenges, we’re gonna lift together, and move on as a team. (1280)

* So by now we know Enes Kanter was asked to put his hand over his heart last year for the U.S. national anthem. Wonder if Rudy Gobert, Dante Exum, and Brock Motum will be as well.

Bits from Training Camp, 9/30 and 10/1

October 2, 2014
tags: , ,

** Quin Snyder, asked if transition defense is the first thing he’s trying to implement
I think it’s, you know, it’s the first part of any defensive possession. So if you’re not back in transition, you don’t get a chance to play any other type of defense.
** Snyder, asked about balancing transition defense and rebounding
We’re not acquiescing on the offensive glass with our bigs…Those guys need to go to the glass but they also need to sprint back. You know, it’s not either/or. It’s both.
** Snyder on what he wants to see from Trey Burke this year
You know, I’d like, first of all, just on the ball defensively. If he can, you know, he needs to be solid. It starts with him, where he’s being disciplined and also being disruptive, particularly his pick and roll defense. You know, and then, you know, one of the things he does well is, you know, he gets you into things. I wanna see him, you know, in the open court push the ball, push the ball and also throw the ball ahead. I think that right now, it pays for him to develop that habit, [which] will help our tempo. And you know, that’s a little different maybe than he’s played, but the ball doesn’t need to be in his hands. It’ll come back to him, but it doesn’t need to be in his hands that long.
** Snyder, asked if he’s put in any plays yet
We put in a side-out today. So we can, you know, it helps us in scrimmage situations, to be able to have a side-out. And a dead ball, out of bounds. So a dead-ball play, where we can play some pick and roll, which gives our guys opportunities in those situations. But the thing about what we’re doing, hopefully it’s a situation that will find itself in the course of the game without necessarily having to call a play.

** Enes Kanter on the first practice
Really good. You know, pace was unbelievable. You know, this team’s getting better. It’s really hungry. Everybody, everyone giving 100 percent of self, of themself. And so, we just gonna see what’s gonna happen…This team is really hungry and really wants it. So it’s just, it’s a lot different.
** Kanter on balancing transition defense and rebounding
It’s gonna take, you know, some work. Definitely, you know, I have to be more shape and we all have to be in better shape to, you know, just get a good offense, and then get a better defense…I think it’s gonna work pretty well.
** Kanter, asked if he’s thinking more about what he needs to be doing on defense now
Definitely. I mean, let’s say, so last year, I didn’t have much knowledge on defense. But now, this year, that, with coach Quin’s, like, [you feel] that energy. It just coming, like, naturally, you know what I mean? You just wanna play defense, you know? … Defense is just becoming fun too for me, so.

** Derrick Favors on the first practice
We didn’t run a play all practice. You know, everything was basically defense. You know, defensive rotations, where to be at on defense, how to guard your man, different schemes and stuff. So you know, whole practice was basically defense.
** Favors on his role in Quin Snyder’s defense
He want me to just go out there and play defense like I always play, but you know, just meshing with the team. You know, if a guy get beat off the dribble, you know, just make sure I’m there, just talk, be vocal out there.
** Favors, asked about balancing transition defense and rebounding
Yeah, it’s challenging. You know, they want you to go to the offensive board and get back. So I mean, it can be done. It’s challenging, but you know, just something you gotta adjust to and do.
** Lost 10 pounds this summer by changing his diet, working out, swimming, and denying his big sweet tooth of candy

** Gordon Hayward on Jeremy Evans taking jumpers
I think Quin is, coach is instilling that confidence in him [to take jumpers]. He’s instilling it in all the big guys.
** Hayward on his new body
I’m more on-balance, and just stronger, and able to kinda just bully some people a little bit more than I was able to. Honestly, I didn’t really gain as much [weight] as people think. I mean, it was probably like 7, 5-7 pounds of muscle. So, it’ll drop a little bit after training camp. That’s just the nature of how it works, so.
** Hayward on the pace of practice
It’s extremely fast. You know, everything. [Coach] talks about pace being not just being able to run down the court fast, but the little details like getting the ball out of the net and getting it in and making sure that’s as little time as possible. And that’s how we increase our pace, going from drill to drill is fast, so we can think on the fly, ’cause that’s how he wants to play. You’re not thinking when you get the ball; you’ve thought before you got the ball, so. Practice has been extremely fast.

** Alec Burks, asked what is his comfort level this year compared to last year
I’m very more comfortable, and I feel like Quin plays my style, you know? He gon play with pace, you know, open space, and I do that, you know? I do that for a living. I do that. I love to do that. So you know, I like it a lot.
** Burks, asked if Hayward has bullied him with his new body
Nah. I don’t, he ain’t bullied me at all.

** Rodney Hood, asked to sum up Quin Snyder’s personality in one word
I’ll say charismatic. You know, I don’t mean that in a smooth way. You know, he has his times when he can go and get loud and get rough with us, but he has his smooth ways. You know, say his tricky things to put a smile on somebody’s face.
** Hood, asked if he sees any similarities between Snyder and Mike Krzyzewski
Yeah, they get their point across. You know, I think that’s the main thing. They get their point across, and you know, they’re great teachers. You know, they’ll explain it to you and explain it to you and when you don’t get it right, they get you.

** Dante Exum on what Quin Snyder is emphasizing for him specifically on the defensive end
Yeah, it was just, about, it was all about [transition defense], and you know, it’s a big focus this year for us. As a young team, if we can get the d-trans and put ‘em in a halfcourt and make ‘em play, you know, it gives us a better chance to win in the long run. So you know, just about that and being able to lead in the d-trans and getting three back, so.
** Exum, asked what aspect of the game is the team is most confident in right now
You know, I think, ’cause we’re so young, and just getting out and pushing the ball, and running as a team. And Quin has definitely been good in, you know, seeing that as a strength and implementing it into our system.

Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines (UDQM)
** Media to Rodney Hood: What are you seeing out of Trey, and you know, just, kinda, where, you know, what do you, not what do you want to see out of him, but what have you seen from him so far?
** Media to Alec Burks: What’s the biggest thing that’s exciting you right now?
** Gordon Hayward on gaining muscle: Wanted to make sure I was just as fast, and I, during the off-season I made sure that I was.
** Quin Snyder on fatigue during training camp
If there’s lulls now and then, hopefully you can get it back, get that level back up and the lulls aren’t long ones.
** Media on Jeremy Evans’ defense: That’s his hardest thing, isn’t it, as far as, because of his size?
Snyder: I think maybe if he has to wrestle down there.


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