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 I think war is the outdated solution to any conflict,” said Fesenko, a 2007 second-round pick by Philadelphia who was traded to Utah and played four seasons for the Jazz.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:
Four. Rudy Gobert wants everyone to know that six inches isn’t that big.
Five. What a difference a year makes.
** 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.
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.
** 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.
Inspired by @5kl.
David Locke to Jack Cooley: In this system, if one big goes, the other one’s gotta get up. Is that hard…or is that very natural?
David Locke to Trevor Booker on his kids: You got some little ones floating around.
David Locke to Carrick Felix: Do you longboard?
Spencer Checketts to Carrick Felix on his master’s degree: Not just a hat rack, that head.
David Locke to Steve Novak: Do you think it’s going in every time you let it fly?
David Locke to Steve Novak: Who are the shooters you admire?
Unidentified media member to Ian Clark: Who is Ian Clark? I know you can stroke it. I’ve seen that.
David Locke to Ian Clark: If you release it low, do you have to try to move it up, or is that just who you are?
David Locke to Ian Clark: What did you do this off-season?
Unidentified media member to Jeremy Evans: Are we gonna see a lot more from you this year?
Unidentified media member to Jeremy Evans: J, you say that’s big. I give you the eyeball up and down, and you look bigger to me.
Spencer Checketts to Jeremy Evans: You look bigger to me.
David Locke to Rudy Gobert: You’re excited. I can tell. You think you’re gonna do big things this year.
David Locke to Rudy Gobert: When you came, did you believe you could be good?
David Locke to Rodney Hood on his first Media Day: Does it feel big time?
David Locke to Rodney Hood: Have you talked to Trey about “what’s my body about to embark upon?”
Spencer Checketts to Dante Exum: What’s up, Dante?
David Locke to Gordon Hayward: What’s the hardest question you’ve gotten today?
David Locke to Alec Burks on Quin Snyder’s system: Is there any sense it’s going to be hard, because he wants you going specific ways and doing specific things?
Request Locke did not make of Trey Burke:
Gesture Locke did not make at Trey Burke:
** How much of a challenge is it to get players to buy into a team concept in a superstar-driven league?
Absolutely, it’s a challenge, you know, to put yourself in front, or put yourself, to subordinate yourself to the group…That said, it’s unbelievably rewarding. And for this group, hopefully they’ll feel that commitment to the group early and feel how good it feels, and continue to do it. Get a taste of that. And the best teams do. You know, right, in any sport, the best teams are the ones that guys have figured it out.
** The Jazz were the worst defensive team in the league last year. How do you change that?
Well, it’s obviously a priority…You have to not let them have numbers, first of all, where you’re not playing, you know, three against two, four against three, two against one. Which means, guys gotta get back right away. You probably sacrifice some of the offensive glass, but that doesn’t mean our bigs can’t still offensive rebound. So think guards, instead of watching the ball, they gotta, soon as that ball goes up, they have to anticipate and get back. And if it, again, if we’re last in the league in offensive rebounding–I shouldn’t say that. Hopefully, our bigs can be effective offensive rebounders. We have a few that are, and they can continue to do that. We’re not asking them to leave before the possession happens, but we want our guards out…There still may be times where that’s, you know, opportunistic boards, but you know, we’re sacrificing a little bit of that to get back. And the bigs gotta run back and show a crowd. Form a wall, let those guys bring the ball up, see the body so they don’t see the rim.
** Can you build a defensive foundation in Enes Kanter?
Enes has to want that, and we have to help him want that, and we have to hold him accountable for that. And I think he’s embraced, you know, that part, just being a complete player playing on both ends. He’s certainly a talented offensive player, and he needs to hold himself to that standard as well…There’s gotta be a focus and there’s gotta be a discipline, and that’s something we have to train him into, but it starts with his willingness.
** Why did you tell Rodney Hood to stop pump faking?
First, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with the pump fake. But for him, if he’s open, I want him to recognize he’s open before he gets the ball, so he [can] shoot it. And secondly, if he’s not open to shoot, you know, is he open to drive? Can he make that decision before he gets the basketball? If he can do that, the ball doesn’t have to be in his hands very long at all. The other thing he can do, in addition to driving, is passing. So, it’s, hopefully his decision-making process is instantaneous, and that allows us to play with pace. So, I’d like to see him shot-clock, shot-fake at the end of the clock with someone flying at him, and take a little side dribble and make a three. But as far as just kinda playing one-on-one and the ball stopping, I don’t want that.
** What gauges will you use to define success?
The ultimate success is winning an NBA championship. You know, one team does that, but does that mean every other team has had an unsuccessful year? You know, I would argue no. I think in our case, you know, successes, over time, you know, put you in a position to have more success, and our focus has gotta be process-oriented. When we have those small successes, whether it’s in practice, it’s individual, it’s in a game, sometimes it may not equate to the result that we want, but it will equate to a growth process that will ultimately give us that result.
**What is the organization’s reaction to the release of Trey Burke’s nude photos?
Yeah, so, we were made, of the situation this morning. We’ve collected a lot of the facts. We still have a few things to collect, and a couple people to visit with. It’s safe to say Trey will address this. He addressed basketball operations [and] his teammates a few hours ago. It’s safe to say that we are disappointed in what we’ve learned so far, but we’re going to move forward. And really at this point in time, we’re just collecting facts, and then we’re going to reserve some final judgment for a later date…We still have a few more facts to find and some more research to do…Is this a setback [for Trey as a leader]? We’ll determine that as we go forward.
** On the importance of communication
Quin is, one of his natural gifts is communication. And he was just addressing the team this afternoon on just the bare essentials of communication, and the level of respect and consistency that you have to have, and communicating at just basic levels. …
[Quin] really works hard at using verbals. We’ve tried to use humor. For example, we were trying to think of some French words that we could use that our players, that Rudy [Gobert] can say, “Hey, they’re thinking about me.” And I don’t know if we’ll get “Oi Oi Oi” and get some Aussie terms, but we were looking at some Turkish terms for Enes [Kanter]. So, there’re a lotta cute things that you can do, but you want your verbals to be strong, have strong connotations. You want, sometimes you want a one-syllable word. Sometimes you want two-syllable words. You want the verbals to fit together, if you will. So, there’s a l–I could talk about this the whole show, frankly.*
* Can we get this podcast?
** Have you talked with the players about Quin Snyder? Are they excited about his system?
I think [Derrick Favors and Gordon Hayward] have already seen his level of commitment, his acumen, his intelligence, his enthusiasm, his ability to communicate and bring a group together…Yesterday, we were here just organizing the Media Day, if you will, and I was taking some of my old-man laps and getting my steps in. And Quin and the coaches were out here two, two and a half hours just organizing their thoughts and their actions for the first day of practice. So the level of commitment and communication’s there. I think our players already see that.
** On Derrick Favors and leadership
Quin’s really taken a lead, since he joined the organization, on communications with all players, but in particular Derrick. Derrick’s a foundational piece. He’s someone that we wanna build our defense around. He improved his offense, his finishing specifically, last year. We made a big push to have Derrick agree to, understanding it to be, to lead this group he’s gotta be part of the community. Derrick’s committed to Salt Lake, committed to summer league. He’s committed to open gym. So I’m just thrilled with, frankly, the summer that he’s had. He’s taken all the messages and challenge, and he’s scored an A+ so far.
** On Alec Burks and Enes Kanter’s contract extensions
We have engaged in conversation…They’re both valued members, and we’re really proud of where they are at, as people and as players. And we’ll see if it dictates that we can get something done early or if we go into the July period, but we anticipate both of ‘em being with the Jazz for a long time.
** Dante Exum does not have a driver’s license at present time.
** Can you address the release of Trey Burke’s nude photos?
We’re well aware of it. We have, we’ve had discussions about it. Ownership is well aware of it, and of course, this falls into Dennis’ area, and so Dennis is gonna be coming up next.* And Dennis will address the issue with all of you.
* Phrasing, Randy!
** What is your biggest worry this year?
Well, I’m, I think the thing that I’m worried about is over-ex — over-positioning and over-expectations from some of our fans of wanting to see us immediately, with the changes we’ve made, expecting that we should be immediately a playoff- or a championship-caliber team…So, my biggest concern is, is that some of our fans not have enough patience. Now, having said that, I don’t want our fan base to think that we’re content to not d–to not be winning and not to be really be out there competing. We’re going to literally prepare every game as, and we’re gonna go into it planning to win it.
** On the youth movement
Yeah, we’ve kinda burned the, we’ve had to burn the ships behind us…These players have earned, to me, the time f–this is their time now. And I think they’re, they will prove up that they’re worthy of the merit.
** This is not a knock on Tyrone Corbin–he has his ways–but talk about how this team is going to look extremely different under Quin Snyder.
What we’ll see different is, it’s a difference in just philosophy and style. And neither one is can be right or wrong. But I think the time, as we’ve heard and seen what Quin’s philosophy and proposal is, that it’s the right time for Jazz basketball to move to this style. I think it’s gonna be, it is conducive to, also, I think, the players that we have in this system.
** What does Quin Snyder bring to the Jazz?
Number one, he brings passion. Quin is, loves the game of basketball. He is a student of the game of basketball. He’s played the game of basketball. And he’s been, he’s coached, and he’s coached it from many different levels, from the D-League, to professionally, to the collegiate side. And I’ll tell you, as I’ve watched him during this off-season, in preparing and preparing his coaching staff, he is passionate about working and preparing, and being really prepared for what we’re trying to teach our players, and what our style that we’re doing, and also in the development and the individual care about our players and working with them and helping them to become the best that they can be…I think he fits very well.
** What was it like meeting Quin Snyder?
When Quin walked in, one of the things that struck me right away was his presence. And he’s a leader; you can tell just from being next to him. And of course, he looked great. He had a nice suit, and a pressed shirt, and
great hair so on. And it was just, it was a little bit of formality, as you’d expect in that situation…but it became a very comfortable situation very quickly. And we all had our questions prepared and kind of just rapid-fired them at Quin. And he fielded ‘em, and explained himself very well on every one of them, and obviously did a good enough job conveying his philosophies to us that here he is today in front of us.
** You talked the other day about your passion, the passion that burns deep and burns pretty hot. What’s your relationship with Quin Snyder? How often do you talk?
I wouldn’t say I communicate with him on a–maybe it’s a regular basis, but not a frequent basis. And there’s a couple of reasons for that. One is that my schedule’s been crazy and I just haven’t been around that much this summer. But I think more than that, it’s that my role is to set my expectations for the team through Dennis and through Quin…My job is now to step back and let Dennis and Quin do their job. In this case, we’re talking about Quin. And I believe that he needs to have the autonomy to implement his policies and to hold his guys accountable and to be himself, and not have the threat of me meddling or you know, even worse, having the players think that, “Well, if don’t–” If they don’t like what Quin says, they can just come running to me.* That would be the worst possible thing I could do to Quin. So, I’d like to, I keep my distance a little bit for those reasons. But I’m happy to spend as much time with Quin as he would like, and I’m actually hoping that I’m gonna be able to join the team on a road trip or two this season and hopefully we’ll get a little time together when we’re on the road.
*cough* Deron *cough*
** I [Spencer Checketts] am not saying one is right and one is wrong and I’m not asking you to knock on Tyrone Corbin, but how different will this team look under Quin Snyder?
Well, I think the big way is the level of execution, because I just–and as I said last week, I love Tyrone Corbin. He’s a great man, a great gentleman. I consider him a friend–but [Quin] has taken the accountability to a whole new level. And I think that the players already understand, will continue to have it reinforced that if they don’t do what he asks them to do, it may cost them playing time. So I expect the level of execution to be much higher, and o–you know, obviously that’s gonna be a good thing if it comes to pass.
Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines of the Night (UDQM)
** Dennis Lindsey on Trey Burke’s return from injury last year: I was surprised that he came out of the gate as quick as he came, uh, out of the gate.
** Spencer Checketts: We’ll have Randy Rigby right now. And yeah, Quin’s two-minute warning, it’s up. It is totally up.
** Randy Rigby on Quin Snyder’s passion for the game: I don’t think I realized the depth of the passion that rea–it, at, that’s burning there from him, and watching how much, and how hard of workee* he really is, in really preparing, and working, and pushing. As much pushing the players as we’ve been doing some open gyms and some things, it’s been fun to also watch him push himself and his coaching staff.
* Not a typo.
** Quin Snyder on whether he’s used to being called “Jazz coach Quin Snyder”: It’s getting there, yeah. If not, it will be pretty quick.
** Snyder on Trey Burke’s nude photo situation: You know, right now, you know, we’ve handled that, internally. And Trey’s handled it with his teammates, and we’ve handled it as an organization.
** Snyder on Gordon Hayward as a leader: We don’t need Gordon to play it safe. We need him to let it out.
** David Locke to Snyder on talking to the media: This is gonna be your tug, pull and tug for your whole year. I can see it already.
** Locke: My goal is to never shoot.
Snyder: Your coach put you in a bad position.
** Checketts to Snyder and Greg Miller: Honestly, what was that like when you two came face-to-face?
Miller: Well, it was a long process.
Snyder: There was a point where it was very natural. And I was nervous…but the nerves melted away as we got into the meat (of what we were discussing).
** Checketts to Miller: When we had you on last week, I asked you when you were sold on Quin as the head coach, and you told that story about having him in your home.
** Can you talk about the release of your nude photos?
Yeah, you know, publicly, I want to first and foremost apologize to my family, apologize to the Miller family as well, and you know, my teammates as well. You know, we already talked about it in the locker room, and you know, from this day forward, it won’t happen again, you know? They were old pictures, and you know, they were meant to be kept private, but you know, they weren’t. So you know, from this day forward, you know, my actions and my judgments will be much better.
** How difficult is it to face your family or your teammates after something like this?
It’s difficult, but they were my actions. You know, and for them to come out right now, you know, was the most difficult thing. But you know, they were my actions. I own up to ‘em and I just wanna move past it now and you know, get ready for the season…I’m looking forward to, you know, gaining the trust back from the community, you know, the people in U–Salt Lake City and in Utah.
** Do you feel like you can take a step up in leadership this year?
Absolutely. You know, with actions like that, you know, it kinda s–takes you back a step, but I definitely, you know, feel like I have the leadership skills and my teammates have my trust. You know, so I just gotta continue to, you know, do the right things off the court, and you know, do what I do on the court to lead them and everything will work out.
** What does Quin Snyder bring to this team?
He brings a lot of excitement, you know? I think a lotta, you know, I think everybody on this team is excited to have, you know, not only coach Snyder but the whole coaching staff. And you know, with the new way that we’re playing, you know, he wants the pace to be more uptempo. He wants us to get out in transition, and I think that’s gon play to our benefits, you know, more than anything.
** What’s the big thing for you, defensively?
Well, you know, coach Snyder says it all the time, that he knows I can play defense. But it’s a mindset, you know? Something that I have to take serious, and you know, he axes me all the time, if it’s important–or he tells me all the time, “If it’s important to you, then you’re gonna do it.” So, that’s an area that I know that I, you know, I can grow in a lot, especially from last year. I know I can be a good defender, even with my size. Just getting over screens, I think that was the biggest area that I needed to work on, and I worked on it a lot this summer.
** Do fans need to be patient with this team?
Absolutely. I think the fans need to be patient with this team, but on the other hand, I think, you know, we have the talent to, you know, give the fans what they want, you know, and you know, start the season off better than we started out last year. I think we dug ourselves in a, you know, really big hole last year starting off 0-13.
The Jazz-owned 1280 The Zone also didn’t post Trey’s interview with the media.
** What did you work on this summer?
I tried to get stronger a lot. You know, with my game, I go to the rim a lot, and I took a lot of pain, falling and you know, getting hit…so I just want to get stronger for that.
** How will you be different this year?
Just more mature as a player, you know? Both sides of the floor, you know? I just feel like I really know my role. I know what I can do, and I know I can get it done, you know? So I feel like just knowing what I can do in this league, that’s why I feel like Imma be a better player.
** Talk about your maturity.
I been out here, you know? I feel like just been through a lot, you know? I sat on the bench, you know, a couple years, ’cause we had the vets, you know? Just, I just, I been around, so I just, I know where it is…I know what time it is.
** How does Quin Snyder’s system fit your game?
I feel like it’s gonna fit good, you know? He likes to play with space, you know, and I love space, you know? That’s what I do, I get to the rim. I need space to do that. So I feel like it’s gonna work great. … He is giving me a lot of freedom in the offense, more than I had before, you know? Just, you know, I got to play a little bit more in the offense, but he give me as much freedom as I need to. You know, that’s what I like about the offense…He want a lot of movement. He don’t just want stagnant pick and rolls or nothing like that.
** What do you think of Quin Snyder?
He’s a great dude.
** If the Jazz had a dunk contest, who would win?
Me of course. Jeremy [Evans] know I can beat him in a dunk contest.
** What’s the best thing you did this off-season?
I had a birthday. That’s the best thing.
What’d you do for your birthday?
In Kansas City.
If you’re playing ball in Kansas City and some guys tries to talk at you, are you killing him?
Imma let you know why I do this for a living, you know? That’s all…If you forget, Imma let you know.
** How’s your family? Dad still got that great smile?
Yeah, he do. Yeah yeah yeah yeah.
And brother’s still out here with you?
Yeah, he is. He out here with me, so, you know, great.
** Happy in Utah
I been here all summer. It’s more like a second home to me now. You know, I told myself at the end of the, end of last season I was gonna stay out here and just try to, you know, be around Utah a lot more. You know, that’s what I did, and I enjoyed every minute of it.
** On this season
I finally got my opportunity I’ve been waiting for for the longest, and you know, no pressure, no burden, nothing. I’m just, I’m ready for it.
** What are your impressions of Quin Snyder?
Coach Quin? He’s one of those coaches that, he’s very, he’s gonna teach all the small details-type of stuff. You know, offense, defense. He was just showing us how he wanted us to play. You know, he’ll talk to me about what he wanted my role to be on the team, what he expected out of me, what he wanted me to do within the offense and on the defensive end. And so far, you know, I like every part of it.
** Were there specific shots Quin Snyder asked you to work on?
Yeah, basically, you know, just baseline jumper, free throw line jumper, and just try to stretch the floor out a little bit more ’cause of the type of offense we gon run, and you know, I’m probably gonna be playing center’s position anyway. So, just work on different things other than just going in the paint and banging all day.
** How much contact did you have with Gordon Hayward this off-season?
Not that much. You know, he been busy with his, with the national team stuff, so, I didn’t wanna get involved in all that stuff, so we been talking since he got back.
** Can you and Enes Kanter play together? What will it take to have some magic between Favors and Kanter?
You remember I told you I’m gonna get 10 assists one game? I think he’s gonna be a big reason why. You saw him making the threes that he can shoot, you know, when teams start double-teaming me or whatever, or when I’m rolling to the basket and they rotate, Imma be looking for Enes, throw it to him, he hit the three. That gon be part of the 10 assist Imma get.
** What do you think of Quin Snyder?
Extremely sharp. Really detailed. Precise. You know, kinda like me in that you’re, like, borderline OCD on certain things, where it’s gotta be done this way and it’s gotta be right. And I think that’s the way it has to be…We need somebody to tell us, “This is how it has to be. If you don’t know it, I’ll teach it to you and this is what it’s gon–this is what you’re gonna do”…He’s definitely big on accountability, and if you don’t do something right, you’ll come sit over by him, and he’ll tell you, and then he’ll put you back in and give you another chance, so. … I’ve actually had people come, go out of their way to tell m–to call me or tell me, like, “Hey, you’re taking our guy.” Like, “You’re taking our coach. Give him back.” Like, everyone’s had nothing but positive things to say about him. And then on top of that, coach called me and we communicated a lot this summer. And we sat down and we’ve talked about it, and just in conversation between me and him, you can tell he’s got it all up top mentally, and it’s good for me to see, someone like me who’s a skeptic, and for him to just sit down, he’s already, you know, he’s already won me over.
** Is there additional pressure that comes with a max contract?
I don’t think there’s any added pressure. There was just as much pressure last year on me, you know, so I think this was just a business thing.
** On who are the leaders of the team
We’ve talked about, the past couple years, about Derrick and I stepping up, and it’s gonna be another year for that of us continuing to be leaders. You know, not just by example, but vocally at times too. And at the end of the day, coach is our leader.
** Did you get that big new “Halo”-type game?
Of course I got “Destiny.”
** Has your marriage affected your video game time?
We had to have a sit-down talk about that. I had to sit her down and say, “Listen. This is who I am. You’re not gonna change that.” So, that backfired a little bit on me. In retrospect, it might not have been the best decision.
** Congratulations on the marriage. Hey, how was the wedding? We didn’t talk about that.
Wedding was good. Wedding was–
How nervous were you?
I was extremely nervous, and I didn’t think I was gonna cry, and I cried when she was walking down the aisle. Which was brownie points, right?
Yeah, that’s good.
** Tell everyone about your favorite new thing.
Oh yeah. No, I got a Tesla. P85, Model S Tesla. It’s the most fun thing I’ve ever driven. Most fun car. I mean, it’s like a roller coaster. You take off in it, so. I definitely upgraded a little bit.
Was this hard for you?
It was difficult, but still, I mean, it’s a practical thing. It’s the No. 1 rated car in “Consumer Reports” ever. Highest rated car on the market. Saves me a bunch of, it’s 90 miles to the gallon. Relatively, if you work out the electricity and everything. And you can also, you know, pay less money if you only charge it at, like, 3 a.m., 4 a.m.*
You’re making a buttload of money. You couldn’t spend it all if you wanted to.
Uh, you could spend it…I mean, you could buy islands.
* Would Hayward have made the purchase if this option weren’t available?
** What is your relationship with Quin Snyder like?
It’s so different, that it’s like, it’s, with my other coaches before. It just, he’s just like a type of guy that is not, like, he’s thinking like, a big brother, a young brother, you know what I mean? He’s just doesn’t, he’s not like, “Well, I’m the coach. I know everything.” He’s asking players. He’s telling us sometimes what should we do, what should we not do, you know what I mean? So, he’s communicating with the players. I think, it shows a lot to me…When you play and if you have, if you’re under stress, then it’s gonna affect your game too. But when you talk to coach Quin, or, he gives the confidence and he communicating with you so well that you just wanna just go for it. And you just go out there and wanna play for him. So, so much difference.
** How committed are you to improving your defense?
I think right now this year, the, my thing is, the most thing I need to focus on is just defense and we’ve been working on defense with coach Quin. And just, right now, it’s, to me, is more important than offense now, ’cause you know, you can score the ball, then everybody can score the ball. But you know, the important thing is to just getting back, getting out there and good defense.
That’s not what you were saying at the end of last year. Why did your mentality change?
Someone’s gonna score the ball, but if you want to win, if you want to bring back playoffs to Utah, then we have to get that defense up. So that’s why, that’s what I’m focus on this year. And my teammates too.
** How will Quin Snyder’s system benefit you the most?
I mean, first, when I, the, you know, the, it’s a young team. It’s a, we have something really special here, you know, all the new guys, all the new coaching staff, all the, you know, the new almost everything. I think we have really something special here. I know we are all young and stuff…and I don’t really believe [the naysayers]. And I think young, younger means hunger to me. You know, we were more hung–we more hungry…I don’t know if I wanna say “promise,” but I r–I just really, we really wanna bring back the playoffs to Utah.
** So you expect this team to contend for a playoff spot?
Definitely…It’s just, so much exciteness. You know, I’m just, like, pumped up and ready for the season.
Enes channeling Big Al with the tights
** How’s the long-range shot coming?
I’ve been really working on my, you know, threes, corner threes. Especially after coach Quin, so I was rehabbing in Chicago and coach Quin just came and visited me. And you know, the fir–we went to gym, the first thing he said, that, you know, “You gonna start shooting threes. You know that, right?” So we were just, I was just, like, really excited…I was just, like, you know, shocked that he, first time I, he met me, like, gave me that confidence. I mean, it means a lot to me.
** On Mehmet Okur taking a role with team
Oh, I’m really excited. You know, he came and, I think two weeks ago, and show me some stuff that, about shooting…I’m really excited for, first of all, have a Turkish guy on the team. I’m gonna speak some Turkish, and he might take me some Turkish restaurants. But I’m really excited for him, to, you know, a Turkish legend like Mehmet Okur in a team like this, and he gonna, you know, can show me some stuff that he had experienced before. So, I’m really excited and blessed.
** What if you start shooting that three, you get soft, and you don’t wanna go down low anymore and bang. Is that gonna happen?
No, definitely not. You know, ’cause, I’ll give you an example, like Mehmet Okur. You know, he really good shooter, and he’s still doing down-low work. So, something, something about Turkish people. It’s going to work.
Well, if you could shoot the three like Memo, we’d all be pleased with that.
I’m hoping so.
** On the Islamic State (ISIS)
I think it’s just making me and probably making other Muslim really sad that, you know, they’re representing the Muslims are really bad way. You know, I think, and I’m thinking that they can’t be Muslims, you know? ISIS can’t be Muslims, and I don’t, what, I know what they’re doing is just really wrong and I’m telling the whole America here now, if they’re watching us, I mean, just, it’s a shame and I just don’t even wanna talk about or even wanna watch when the news come because Muslims can’t be like that, so.
** Who on this team is most likely to be the guy you guys are going to pick on?
Favors: I don’t know. You gotta ask Enes that.
Kanter: I think I’ll say Rudy [Gobert]. Still Rudy, ’cause he’s still a rookie, right?
Favors: Rudy’s still got to take, probably gotta take my bags to the plane for me.
Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines of the Night (UDQM)
** Gordon Hayward, asked if he flexes in front of the mirror: There’s zero flexing going on…[pause]…in the mirror.
** Hayward on “Destiny”: It’ll definitely provide me some, when I’m on the down time, just something to do, so.
** Hayward on his video game time: I guess being married, I got better things to do. You know, entertain her and keep my wife happy. But I make sure when she goes to sleep, you know, I can–“You’re going to sleep? Okay, I’ll go play video games.”
** Hayward on marriage: Jeremy doesn’t know what he’s doing. So, no. It doesn’t work that way.
** Locke to Hayward: When are you going to splurge?
Hayward: I did splurge on that. It was a big splurge.
** Hayward on restricted free agency: They’re pulling at you, but you’re still kinda halfway tied down.
** Locke to Hayward: Do you want to pick a bone with me?
** Enes Kanter on his knee surgery: I had surgery close to two months ago. Now it’s coming pretty well.
** Favors on whether he’ll shoot a three: We’ll see. I might pull one.
** Locke on playing “Word Association”: Derrick’s nice enough to let me try things with him.
** What are the main differences between Quin Snyder and Tyrone Corbin’s systems?
The way that [Snyder] has certain guys positioned on the floor to succeed, I feel like it’ll help us a lot because of, it’s not really you need to be in a certain spot. It’s like an area, and he lets you become a player and use your talents to help the team, you know, be successful. … Definitely, he’s a player’s coach, I feel like. You know, after practice he’s always with somebody on the court, working on something they need to work on.
** Do Quin Snyder’s reads work better for you?
The more you do it, the more it becomes natural. And especially, you know, for all the reads that we have, it allows you to be a player so you don’t have to think. You just react.
** What are your expectations for yourself this season?
Well, first of all, I’m way more relaxed coming in this year, you know, being, last year being my rookie year. Had a lot of jitters and everything, you know, the first year, not knowing what to expect and everything. But this year, you know, we have a new coaching staff and new guys. I’m just more confident in myself, the work that I put in this summer, coming in and being more of a combo guard instead of just a wing. Just try to find some minutes on the court.
** Richard Jefferson is gone. Who are the locker room leaders now?
I would say just from a, being, from a Utah Jazz standpoint, being Gordon [Hayward] or Derrick [Favors], ’cause they’ve been here the longest. Those guys are technically kinda the vets now…Also, with Steve Novak and Trevor Booker coming in, you know, those are guys that have been in the league for a minute or two, so they definitely can help us.
** What do you think of Quin Snyder?
I love him. I told the guys earlier today, he puts us in positions that we’ll actually be in on the court, and you know, we’re comfortable with making passes or you know, where our teammates are.
** Have you put on any weight?
Maybe a couple pounds, one or two…[Last week] I tipped the scale at 200, so, I hope so. I hope I can keep it on.
** Are you trying to get back to the Dunk Contest?
Not really…If it happens, I’ll go back if they call me. But I wouldn’t say it’s a goal of mine. The first goal is to try to win.
** On Alec Burks
He’s a funny guy. I think the funniest thing about him is he thinks he can jump higher than me.
If the Jazz had a dunk contest, who would win it?
I told Alec, he gotta take my trophy.
** What do you have to do to take the next step?
Probably just be there mentally every game, and come out and do my best and give it my all. I feel like it’s so many times that I just don’t do that, and I can be so much better.
** What’s the best thing you did this summer?
Went to Jamaica…It was nice. I got to stay on, in a resort and just got in the water. I love going, you know, swimming…I think the best part about it, though, I got to play soccer with a couple of guys, so.
What couple guys?
Couple Jamaican guys, Americans. And it turned out to be a little better than I thought…I’m pretty good.
** When Gordon was going through his contract stuff, I [David Locke] texted him. He wouldn’t text me back.
Oh, come on. He had to text you back.
No. Maybe, you know, I hit him up once, probably right after he hit me that time.
Did you go to the wedding?
Yeah, I did.
How was it?
It was pretty nice. Yeah, I had a lotta fun. Got to meet, you know, a couple of his friends, you know, that I talk to now. Ready to see ‘em when they come out and have fun.
He’s your guy. How did you feel when you heard he could be going to Cleveland and you might be separated, that Frick and Frack was going to be broken up?
Not really. I just, you know, know that anything can happen, and just hold off and wait, just, you know, see the final call.
** On hitting Gordon Hayward up for money
I should, but he probably wouldn’t answer.
** Andrew Wiggins got a lot of pub for his massive jump at P3. Did you go there intentionally to break his record?
Not at first. But then after, you know, like you said, you hear the talk about it, and I’m like, “Man, what happened to, you know, my numbers and stuff?” So, I feel like, that, I need to, you know, prove some people wrong and set the bar high.
What was your final number?
I think 12-9. My goal is to get 13 [feet].
Twelve-nine. Do you realize how stupid that is?
Yeah, it’s pretty high.
** How do you feel you did at the World Cup?
Yeah, the Worlds was a bit up and down for me. You know, I didn’t get as many minutes as I wan–would’ve liked to, but you know, it’s all about a learning experience for me, and you know, [Australian national team head coach] Andrej [Lemanis] made that clear with me. And so, I had a good experience with it, in learning how to be professional in that kind of environment.
** Do you have to be patient with yourself, and does that affect confidence?
I think so. You know, a lot of people have been kinda putting me down. ‘Cause I’m only 19 years old, and I know it’s gonna be a patience thing, but I know both me and Rodney, we’re competitors, and we wanna be the best player we can right now. And we’re, so, we’re coming in everyday and trying to get better so when it comes to the opening night, that we’re ready. And it’s not about trying to be patient, so.
** What do you expect your biggest challenge in your rookie season will be?
I think physicality. You know, to step up and play with grown men compared to what I’ve been used to…I got a quick first step, and getting into the paint and trying to finish over guys, I think, and play with contact. So I think that’s gonna be the main thing. I’m gonna have to try and adjust as quick as possible to it.
** How has your family influenced you?
My dad played college basketball at UNC and played professionally back in Australia, and you know, I’ve had a loving family that’s supported me the whole way. My brother’s been there since Day One teaching me how to play basketball, and you know, I think that helps getting you to places, and I don’t think I would be here without them…[My mom is] kind of more on the business side, and she’s learning the game of basketball and how she can help me.
** You’ve been in Salt Lake for a week. What can’t you find, and what have you found that you like?
Well, actually, I’m a big fan of the Cheesecake Factory, so I’m happy I found one of those here. But things I can’t find? I don’t think there’s anything. One of the coaches, Alex Jensen, just told me that I can find some Tim Tams here, so I’m happy about that.
** What do you think the Utes didn’t do well against Washington State?
They didn’t score enough.
** Do you feel like you showed this summer what you’re capable of doing?
That was a great summer for me. I play a lot of playing time in summer league and national team, so I think I [did].
Did you feel like you could do all of that last year?
I think I got better and I got way stronger during the season, so I don’t think I was really ready to play at the beginning, but at the end I was ready.
** What role does confidence play?
That’s why I want to play summer league and national team, you know, to get my confidence back and be ready for the, for this season coming up.
** Quin Snyder’s bigs have to be able to pass and make reads away from the ball. Does that fit your game?
Of course. Of course. You know, I was a good passer, you know, when I was young…and that’s good that coach trust me about the pass. And he knows how to use me, so it’s gonna be great.
** What can you bring offensively to this team?
Coach want me to run the floor and first of all get my teammates open and help the team offensively. And after that, bring a lot of energy. Offensive rebound, and I know I’m gonna score being at the right place at the right time, and offensive rebound for sure.
** How do you block shots?
That’s timing. I’m very long, so it helps. Timing, anticipation. And when you get your shot blocked, you know, you think twice after when you come back. So, after I try to get in people’s head, and it helps the team.
** Did you say anything to Pau Gasol after you dunked on him?
No, I didn’t say nothing. I respect him…I just try to play and win the game.
** When you came to the NBA, did you believe you could be good?
Of course. I came in the NBA to be good, and I think I didn’t do anything else, so I came here to play, to be a very good NBA player, so. I’m just starting.
** Is Quin Snyder’s system a good fit for your game?
I mean, it’s a great fit, you know? He doesn’t want us to be shy, you know, as far as, you know, if you can shoot it, shoot it. If you can get to the basket, get to the basket. He doesn’t want us to slow–play slow-down ball. He wants us to play with pace, so I, from that perspective, you know, you got guys who can get to the basket, and me just sit out there and do my job and knock down shots.
** On learning the offense
I mean, the game is a game of phases. You know, you start off with one move, and then, you know, they stop that one and you go to another one and counter, and you know, it just an ongoing thing, and it’s been great to have [Quin Snyder] so hands-on with me.
** Who’s the one NBA player you’ve thought about going against one-on-one?
I mean, for me, it’ll probably be Monta Ellis just because he’s from Mississippi and I watched him growing up, when he was in high school before he made it to the NBA. So I always looked up to him.
** What is your living situation?
I mean, well, my brother, my big brother’s coming out here, and, just to keep an eye on me. And you know, and his family.
** How has your family influenced you?
Everybody in my family played ball. My mom, dad, sister, brother. And just watching them go through it, and you know, listening to the advice of my dad, you know? He played overseas for a few years, and just listen to everything he says about taking a professional step into this league and trying to be the best you can be. That’s how, that’s the way he always taught me, just, no matter what the result, just be the best you can be.
** People calling Deron Williams “Duh-RON”: Rodney Hood.
Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines of Media Day (UDQM)
** Clark on adjustments to his shot: This year, I been, being in the stance, ready, and just getting it off faster.
** Clark on adjustments to his shot, continued: I’ve tried releasing it higher, and I think it gets me, it gets the arc a little off. Like I said, I think the biggest thing for me, because my release is so low, is just being ready early, before the ball is swung to me, being ready to shoot.
** Clark on the long NBA season: This year, you know, I got more of a sense of what’s coming up, and I’m ready for it.
** Clark on reads in Quin Snyder’s system: The more you do it, the more it becomes natural.
** Jeremy Evans on unselfishness in practice paying off: I believe that’s real big…Everybody feeds off that. It’s just a simple thing, but it goes a long way.
** Rudy Gobert on how he blocks shots: That’s timing. I’m very long, so it helps.
** Rodney Hood on Media Day: I guess the first one always fun.
** Hood on NBA 2K: I haven’t got it. I’m ready to get it though, just play with myself.
Locke: So Rodney Hood’s gonna play with Rodney Hood?
Hood: Oh yeah, most definitely. Most definitely. I got to.
** Locke: One day during open gym, you finished and then Quin came, and spent about 10 minutes with you…You were pump faking and he’s like, “No, no, no, no. We’re not doing that.” Explain why he didn’t want that.
Hood: I mean, just, you know, we playing pretty quick and we playing with the pass. So you know, my job is to shoot, and you know, my pump fake is used in certain situations, but you know, I have a quick trigger, so he just want me to just, I mean, let it ride.
** Dante Exum on attending the Utah-Washington State game: Brock was loving it, so. He was kinda trying to persuade me to go the other way.
** Spencer Checketts: What’s up, Dante?
Exum: Not much, just trying to get out.
** David Locke: Tweet out that Dante Exum’s on. Then our audience will, like, go up 10 times.
** Locke to Exum, on criticism: I’m just gonna keep feeding it to you to piss you off.
** What can you bring to the Jazz this year?
Well, I plan on bringing leadership, experience. You know, with me making the playoffs for the first time, I can bring a little bit of experience. A lotta energy, and just a lotta passion.
** Is it weird to be known for your love of cereal?
I mean, I didn’t expect to get known for it, but it is what it is. I’ll take it. I love cereal.
** What do you think of Quin Snyder and his system?
Coach Q’s like a, he’s like a basketball genius. I mean, he knows the game so well. He’s trying to, you know, incorporate the offense and defense and at the same time point out little things to the players and make sure we see it from his perspective on why we’re doing this and this. So I mean, he’s great so far.
** You get compared to Paul Millsap. Do you see that?
Yeah, I could see that. A couple years ago, people were asking me who I patterned my game after, whose game is parallel to mine. And I would tell them Paul Millsap, because he was that workhorse when he was here. You know, he got the job done; rebounder; hard-nosed guy.
** Tell us about yourself.
I’m a family guy. I love playing with my kids. When I’m free, you can find me with my family, playing with the kids, just running around the house being a big kid with me.
How old are they?
Nine, four and one.
Are they all boys?
One girl and two boys. The oldest is the girl.
** What should fans know about your game?
That I play hard…I give 100 percent, if not 120 percent every time I’m on the floor. I’m a guy who’s gonna defend, I’m a guy that’s gonna do all the small things, and like I said, I’m a guy that’s gonna go out there and just play the game of basketball like it’s supposed to be played, so.
** What can fans expect from you? (different interview)
Definitely they can see a guy who’s gonna, every time I step on the floor, I mean, I’m gonna give 110 percent.
** What was your reaction to being traded to the Jazz?
I was excited. It’s definitely an opportunity to–as the Utah Jazz is building a new culture, and building to win a championship, I wanna be a part of something like that. I wanna be a part of something bigger than myself, so it was definitely easy. It was a easy feeling, so.
** How did skateboarding evolve into basketball?
I definitely feel like it’s helped me with my athleticism, and also just, I just, I don’t really fear too many things, especially on the court. Skateboarding made me very not afraid to take the risk and not afraid to go up against anything, and I think that’s one thing that I’m grateful for and from, taken from it, so.
** On his master’s degree from Arizona State
It’s something that is very, very, very dear to my family, so I definitely have to go after it.
** There’s a retired player that people would like you to become. Who is that player?
That player is Bruce Bowen…Definitely, I watch a lot of his game, and I definitely see myself being that type of player. Just a little bit more athletic, but definitely see myself being that type of player. Just kinda the way he defends, the way he just kinda just embraces his role, hits open shots, and I mean, I’m always willing, I wanna guard the best player on the floor every time, so.
** On providing veteran leadership
Definitely. I’ve been on a lotta different teams. Winning teams, teams that are growing, teams that are not very good at all. So I have a lotta, I have a different perspective that these guys can lean on and learn from. And that’s my, part of my role coming to this organization, is be able to mentor a couple guys, teach ‘em how to work, teach ‘em how to practice on a daily basis, teach ‘em how to compete, and then play at a high level myself.
** Did you know fellow Dukies Quin Snyder and Antonio Lang before you signed with the Jazz?
I do, I did, in a small way, because when I go back to the school and different events for coach [Mike] K[rzyzewski], those guys are around. We don’t know each other a great deal, but we’re very familiar with each other.
** What does Quin Snyder bring?
You know, he’s a basketball mind. He’s a basketball junkie. He’s someone who I think we as players really respect because we know when he’s even not with us, he’s thinking about the game. He’s figuring out ways to make us better, and implementing that as soon as he gets to us. And you can see his mind kinda churning even when he’s talking to us in practice and stuff like that. So, that’s what we want as players, someone who thinks about us when he’s away from us and thinks about how to use us better.
** What are your impressions of what Quin Snyder is trying to do with this team?
Last year, I know the pace was very slow, and I think you can see a lot that Quin is gonna definitely help the pace. And we’re gonna get up and down the court; we’re gonna outlet the ball quickly; we’re gonna not have play calls a lotta times on the court. It’s gonna be very much, he’s gonna trust us. And so, I think there’ll be some trouble at times. We won’t look perfect at times, but I think it’s gonna be a process that we’ll get better at, and I think, you know, he’s a very, very smart basketball mind, so I think that we as players believe in his system and are gonna buy in.
** Tell us about yourself.
I grew up in a basketball family. My dad was a high school coach when I was born. He was my high school coach. He coached myself and my brother at the same time. I was a senior; he was a freshman. So I grew up in a basketball atmosphere, and I think he’s the one that really taught me how to shoot. Taught me to love the game, just kinda introduced me to the game and I grew up pretty much at his practices. You know, going to the vending machine…and opening my bag of candy and, like, pouring it on the floor and eating it off the floor. So, this has always been, like, where I’m most comfortable, in the gym. And so, I was just lucky to grow up in that kind of environment and be with, you know, my dad through that whole time, who was obviously someone who I really looked up to.
** Who are the shooters you admire?
Definitely growing up, Ray Allen. He was in Milwaukee with the Bucks when I was growing up in Milwaukee, and just a, obviously a good guy. Someone who my parents were like, you know, “He’s a stand-up guy. You should like to watch him and follow him.” And the fact that he was playing for the Bucks at the time and I was, I think, in grade school and high school, he was someone I looked up to…I always wanted to be a shooter, and you know, the big, a lotta times, honestly, the big white guys, to be honest, who shot it, those were the guys I looked up to.
Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines of Media Day (UDQM)
** Dahntay Jones, asked if he knows Quin Snyder: I haven’t known him like that.
** Trevor Booker on Media Day: It’s not really a bad part about it. It’s just time consuming. But you have to do it, so.
** Booker, asked if he’ll be rebounding and leading the break: I don’t know. I gotta talk to coach about that, see what he thinks. He’s been watching, so hopefully he let me, lets me bring it up some.
** Booker on getting Paul Millsap comparisons: I could see the same type of player in me.
** Carrick Felix on his game: I’m a guy that’s gonna do all the small things.
** Felix on being traded to the Jazz: I wanna be a part of something bigger than myself, so it was definitely easy.
** Locke to Felix: Do you longboard also?
Felix: No, actually I hate longboards for some reason.
Locke: ‘Cause they’re fast and you’re gonna die?
Felix: Nah, just ’cause they’re just, the shape of it. I’m just not into it.
** How’s been your reaction with Trey Burke been? And how has he helped you with your game at point guard?
You know, just looking at things he learned, you know, it’s helping me through open gyms. And then starting tomorrow, I feel like I can learn some more things, you know, and just continue to get better as a point guard.
** What are your thoughts on Quin Snyder so far?
I feel like he’s a great coach, you know? He know what he talking about, and you know, hopefully he can change the organization. And I feel like he’s a great coach.
** What are your goals this season?
Just to help the team win and whatever I can do, just to help us get better.
** Tell us about yourself.
I’m from Glenview, Illinois. I went to the University of Notre Dame. I graduated in 2013. I have a degree in finance. And I grew up, I’ve, I lived with my mom and dad and my sister Blair. She goes to the University of Missouri. She’s a journalism major. And I’m engaged to a beautiful fiancee, Jackie Oberlander.* And, no date yet, but you know, we’re just still working on that. But, I mean, just, life’s pretty great now.
* Which is cuter, Jack and Jackie or Rodney Hood’s parents, Ricky and Vicky?
** Is your fiancee moving to Utah?
She will be coming out in January. She’s finishing up an internship. She’s an architect. She’s working in downtown Chicago, so.
** You look pretty comfortable from 20-22 feet.
I showed [my range] a lot better this summer league. I can shoot threes, and I can shoot outside jumpers. I mean, in the system right now, I’m trying to see where I can find my shots and stuff like that, but coach [Quin Snyder] is doing a good job of recognizing that I can shoot. And I mean, I’ve been doing it a pretty good amount in the open gyms and making those shots. So, I just wanna–the offensive end is good. I just want to try to learn all the defenses and just keep playing hard.
** How does Quin Snyder’s system fit your game?
No matter how good of a shooter you are, there’s always gonna be misses. So, having, coach is great at having guys crash the glass and play hard and physical, and he respects anyone who plays physical, so it’s good to be able to do that and seem to fit into the system. And the system’s been working pretty well so far.
** What kind of coach is Quin Snyder?
He’s a very, very good coach, and an extremely intelligent coach. You can tell that right away. And he’s very adaptive to what’s going on and makes good adjustments, which is what a coach needs to do. And I, he’s been a phenomenal coach so far.
** Where are you from in Australia, and what’s your basketball background?
From Brisbane, Queensland, so I grew up playing there until I was about 17. Then I moved down to Canberra, the Australian Institute of Sport, the thing that Dante [Exum] came from. I was there for a year and a half, and then I went up to college.
** You know more about American culture so you can compare. What’s the Australian Institute of Sport like?
We can go there either when you’re in school, or when you finish school. So it’s basically, you wake up in the morning, you shoot, you go to a class, you come back, you do weights, individuals, go to a class, and then team practice. And then, you live on-site. And then when you finish school, you do the same thing, but a little extra practice. I’d say you can compare it to a prep school.
** What did you learn about Exum from playing with him on the Australian national team this summer?
I think he’s got a lot of potential. He’s a very exciting player. I played alongside him, obviously, this summer, and I got to know him a lot. He’s a great kid, and I think Jazz fans are gonna be really happy with what they see.
** What’s the first CD you ever bought?
Probably the Macarena or something. Played that thing until it stopped playing.
** Tell us about yourself.
Well, I’m from Houston, Texas originally, born and raised. I have two older brothers, one younger sister. And my career, I went to s–well, I went to college at Witchita State University, four years. Got my degree, and you know, from my first year of pro, starting off in the D-League, you know, everything was kinda slow, at first. And then as the season progressed, you know, call-ups and people leaving to go overseas, you know, things bounced my way and I finally got to start at point guard. And that’s kinda how my situation at point guard started, from the D-League. And we ended up winning the championship, and I played really well in the championship games. Had a triple double, and my team went on to win the championship. And then went into summer league with the Rockets; it didn’t work. And then the Knicks picked me up, and from then on, you know, Knicks, went into training camp, played really well and pretty soon played, well, and the team voted me in, basically. You know, everybody was a big fan of Toure’, and that’s how I got my career started in the NBA.
** What do you bring to this team?
I’m able to bring defensive capabilities. Defense is really one of my key components of my game. And offensively, I’m a versatile point guard. Also, I can score the ball, so that makes me, you know, a reliable, you know, scorer and not just a defender.
** What do you think of Quin Snyder?
He’s very intelligent. He knows the game, and he’s young, and he’s a, he wants to win. And he doesn’t care about us being young. He feel like if you prep–when you prepare yourself, and you know, work hard everyday, you can have a chance to win in this league.
** What are you trying to get done in Utah?
You know, just being around a young team, new coach, new organization, for me, I just, I came to a situation where I feel like I can get more playing time, and you know, have an opportunity to showcase my talent on a, you know, it might be on a smaller market, but you know, you still in the NBA.
** On headbands
I’m definitely gonna ask, ’cause you know, I really enjoy wearing headbands. But we’ll see. I axe Quin Snyder.
** On being back with the Jazz
Back for a second chance. You know, it feel good to be good. Just trying to give it, go out here and try and kinda, try and have a opportunity to make this team.
** What have you learned since you were here last?
Basically, it’s a business, you know what I’m saying? It’s just something you gotta, it’s not just basketball. You gotta play all, like, all aspects of the game. Just being a good community guy, being a good teammate, locker room guy, everything.