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Raulzinho Neto Highlights and Game Film – Brazil vs. Argentina

September 8, 2014

rudy tweet

Rudy Gobert is the first Jazzman since Devin Harris…

September 8, 2014

…to wear only one earring.

rudy one earring

Yes, this is totally breaking news that is only found here.

Thankfully, training camp is just three weeks away and y’all will soon find better updates here than ones like this one and “Alec Burks, eating on a boat.”

A Study of Drama: Enes Kanter vs. Turkish National Team

September 6, 2014

Enes Kanter and the Sportoto World Cup

Drama erupting every summer between Enes Kanter and the Turkish national team is starting to reach “certain as death and taxes” level.

To recap, Kanter had previously played for Turkey’s U-16 and U-18 teams but declined a call-up to play for the men’s team in 2010. Just weeks after being drafted by the Jazz, he joined the Turkish men’s team for the first time, prior to Eurobasket 2011.

It seemed to be a big deal at the time, with the team even holding a press conference at the airport upon Kanter’s arrival in Turkey.

The coach of the national team, Orhun Ene, was quickly impressed by how Kanter was able to integrate himself into the team:

“He is already playing as part of the team,” [Ene] said. “Both on the court and off it, he has become part of the team very quickly. The fact that he had not played for so long posed a serious question in our minds at first, but he has adapted very quickly.”

It seems like everything went well enough through Eurobasket, although one member of the coaching staff did express sentiments early on that he didn’t feel Kanter was ready for the NBA:

“All the coaching staff and people around basketball think that it is too early for him to go there (to the NBA),” said Nihat Izic, an assistant head coach of the Turkey National Team told Beyond the Beat.*

“He has the chance to play in the Euro League and then after that, when you feel you are ready, then you go to the NBA. He decided to go, and I’m not sure who gave him that advice.” (Pro Basketball Talk)

* This website no longer exists.

Fast forward eight months. The Jazz’s 2011-2012 [regular season] campaign ended with Kanter’s mic drop. He again declined to play for the Turkish NT, and proceeded to have himself a summer of fun on Twitter while dropping 50 pounds on a salad and seafood diet that he invented himself.

In August 2012, a Turkish NT technical coordinator, Bogdan Tanjevic, was quoted saying:

He is a great talent and we miss him a lot. He decided not to join us but honestly, he needs us more than we need him. He has not played or trained with us in the past three years…Without Kanter, it will be a little more difficult but I think we’ll be able to get into EuroBasket 2013. …

Kanter has forgotten how to play basketball. He will never be a center but he always starts with his back to the basket. As a power forward, this would be devastating. He’s 2.10 meters tall and [could be] the best shooter on the Turkish team, backcourt included. But in the NBA, he never takes a shot.” (Ball in Europe)

(This led to Jazz-owned media lambasting the entire Turkish national team and mis-attributing these quotes to the head coach, presumably because Tanjevic said in contrast to Europe, the NBA only has a few great coaches, and included Tyrone Corbin on his list of “weak” NBA coaches.)

Fast forward eight months again. Kanter’s 2012-2013 campaign was cut short in late March by a shoulder injury, making him unavailable to the Turkish NT even if things had been all peachy and dandy between the two sides.

Turkey lost three straight games and was eliminated from Eurobasket 2013 that summer, and all T-H-I-S unfolded from there (including a scolding from Memo Okur).

Fast forward, like, 10 months. When the news first broke in late June this year that Kanter needed knee surgery, the initial reports all included notes about how the surgery meant Kanter was out for the FIBA World Cup.

It was somewhat surprising to me that it had been announced or it was assumed that Kanter was on the Turkish NT, because he had talked with David Locke about the “bad blood” between himself and the team during the 2013-2014 season, and said he hopes to repair the relationship “one day,” but “I think right now, I think it’s a little early.”

In late July, the Turkish NT’s team doctor, Tahsin Beyzadeoğlu, gave an update on Kanter’s current condition that appeared on the Turkish Basketball Federation’s website. The gist of it, from what I can gather through Google Translate, was that Kanter was recovering well and could still potentially join the NT in August.

This brings us to an interview with Kanter published by Turkish newspaper “Hürriyet” on Sept. 2, entitled (translated) “I’m Not a Traitor.”

Quotes from the article, as translated by (and with notes from) addictionary on Jazzfanz:

–I have informed the Turkish Basketball Federation and their doctor about my operation. What he said afterwards was irresponsible. I am the most criticized giant in the 12 Giant Men (Turkish NT nickname) even though I wasn’t playing in it for the last 2 years.

–It went far to calling me traitor Enes, but I believe the truth will reveal itself soon.

–I will be joining my team in the trainings in the 1st or 2nd week of September. I’m looking forward to be beneficial to my NT in the years coming.

–We (the Jazz) want to build a strong chemistry this year and surpass last year. This of course is about playoffs. Personally I want to do the best to represent Turkey and get selected to All-Star. And most importantly, carrying a team to the championship and be the 2nd Turkish player to wear the ring.

–Obradovic (Fenerbahçe’s coach) and Ivkovic (Efes’ Coach) are two of the best in Europe and better than most NBA coaches (was that to Ty?).

–I have watched the lies with patience. They try to make Turkish fans distrust me. Enes is fine. His knee is fine. He uses this excuse to skip NT. He doesn’t tell anything to NT. There was not an MR report by my doctor when they said my knee was OK. I am more willing than previous seasons to wear the Turkish NT jersey. I will be fully ready to join full performance matches at the end of September. Turkish Basketball Federation Chairman said the other day “We believe in Enes.” Made me very happy.

–My laughter tweet “hahahaha” was not for the NT, not for the people of Turkey. It was for some names,* who came to their status and power by “knowing” some higher ground people and could not help get jelly about my success and talk BS back then. I pray for Allah to forgive them anyway. I will try to repair the broken hearts of young basketball fans because of that.

* At the time, Kanter said the tweet was to his brother.

In response to Kanter’s interview, the team doctor released a statement saying (in a Google Translated nutshell) that he doesn’t want to respond to Kanter’s comments because he wants to focus on the team and the World Cup.

Some additional clarification, courtesy of @ssan1110:

ssan1110 tweets

So there you have it. See y’all next summer (or earlier) for the next installment.

I’m On A Boat – Utah Jazz Version

September 5, 2014

Strong language advisory blah blah…


Inspired by @gothedistance49.

Bits from Randy Rigby Interview, 9/3

September 4, 2014


Gordon Hayward didn’t make the USA team, but it’s been fun watching Raul Neto play for Brazil. He’s got a nice stroke and is a good-looking player.*
Raul, I’m been very impressed as I’ve been watching him, and it’s giving me a lot of excitement and encouragement to say, “You know what? I think we may have had, we have, may have a little jewel here that I think can continue to develop, and I hope will be a really great asset for the Utah Jazz over some time.”

And Rudy Gobert has played, I think, for France, very well, and I haven’t seen as much, watching, from Dante [Exum], from Australia yet, but you know, it’s really, I’m excited to see that our young players are getting some experience and some playing time on the international competition.

* This is really how Spencer Checketts phrased the question.

It seems like Dante Exum could be in better shape and develop some things in his game. What should fans expect out of him this year?
I think we need to be s–to look at, well, number one, we need to expect him to continue to discipline himself. He’s now made it into the big leagues. He was a No. 5 pick in the draft, and there was an expectation that sh–goes with that, and I think Dante will rise to the expectation of, really, taking his game, taking this opportunity serious.

Now, from a s–fan perspective of, from a team perspective, I think we need to also show some patience, but show continual improvement and growth. But I think his best years are going to be in the next three to, hopefully, 13 years.

So I think it’s, he’s 19 years old. He just turned 19. And so I think it’s going to take some time for his body to continue to mature, to continue to improve, and he’s got some improvement that we’ve identified in his game.

But what I do like from him, his talent level is there. His heart and his desire to improve is giving us in need, in the, every indication that he wants to improve. So I think all the signs are there. But it’s gonna take a couple years of discipline and hard work for him to really be at a level where he can really compete on the NBA pla–top level.

In your analyzation and from what you’ve heard, where exactly does Exum need to improve?
Well, I think the biggest area he needs to improve is in his shooting. I see, his, and then i–bef–behind that, I think disciplining himself and really controlling himself in, I think his natural athletic instincts has allowed him to steal the ball quick and do some things, but I think he’s gonna have to discipline himself to s–play tougher defense and not try to just gra–quick grabs at, but really stay, play tough, tight defense.

But his biggest improvement in my evaluation and from talking with Dennis [Lindsey], is really also going to be in his shooting, and really learning how to shoot the ball with NBA-type players i–on him.

On this particular team, from where will the leadership germinate, do you suspect?
Well, I think, I’m hoping that we see it in a number of fronts. Number one, I’m really hopeful that with what, the marrying of Gordon Hayward, of maturing that he’s had in the last couple years, the indications I’ve heard about how his body has really grown and developed, I’m hoping that’s gonna translate into, also, mentally, his, also, growing and developing into a real leader as an NBA player.

And I think his experience of going out and now playing with the USA team, of seeing what, you know, qualities it takes and that competitive nature and that desire to be the best, I’m hoping we see some real leadership from Gordon.

He’s, now, can take the contract things and put it behind him, and now really focus on playing the game and leading our team. I’m looking, that, as an example of leadership.

I think, now, we’ve had another year, Trey Burke, is, sorry, Burke is one that also, that I think has, Trey, is one that, I, wants to be a leader. But I think he needs to continue to work on his own personal game, and you know, you need to, you can’t just talk the talk. You need to be, do it by example first.

Derrick Favors showed up this summer…

I think Derrick Favors has shown, his body, trans–has really transposed itself. He looks very good. He’s been in the gym regularly, improving himself. He’s had a desire to want to, also, ask our people “How do I improve myself, and also my relationship out in the community, out with the players?” That’s telling me that he wants to be more of a role with a leader.

With so many young players, should a lot of the leadership come from the coaching staff?
Well, and that’s gonna be, I’m excited to see what our coaches, coaching staff does this year. I will tell you this. I just got done reviewing, and I haven’t done it at, in depth yet, but we had a coach’s retreat this last week, and the work that was put into it with both, with The Quin, and his coaching staff, was very impressive.

And there was probably a book about two inches deep of, really, this whole retreat.

And they, of what they’re doing defensively; offensively; the mindset that we’re, they want to establish with the players. And there was some real thought into, we talked about leadership, but both on and off the court, and what they expected.

And these men worked from early in the morning ’til late at night in this retreat, in really preparing so that they were of one mind of exactly where we’re going and what we’re going to try to accomplish, to really help this young team to maximize their potential, and to get them on a trajectory as fast as possible.

How will Rudy Gobert be handled this year, compared to last year when he was seen as a project?
I’ve been really impressed. Rudy was one that also stayed around right after the season, worked hard and really prepared himself before he, then, left for France to play on the national team. His body has made nice improvement, I, as well. His mindset has made great improvement, and he’s really disciplined himself.

And so then as I then watched him, on a couple of the games, in these FIBA World [Cup] games, I, you could see the fruits of that effort coming to fruition, and I’m very high a–on Rudy, and thinking that if he continues on this tra–on this path that he’s going, he’s gonna be a player that can make a difference for the Utah Jazz, and he’s gonna be a player to reckon with in the NBA. He has great shot-blocking abilities, and I’ll tell you what.

In a couple of instances, they made good passes to him, and then he finished ‘em off in some remarkable slam dunks. And a very impressive player. And I know a lot of the play-by-play people were really talking about, they caught his eye. So I think the people in the NBA are gonna see, potentially, a force to be reckoned with in the future.

How did the Dream Team globalize and impact the game of basketball?
It did two things. One thing, in a positive way. One thing, I still feel I have a little bit of concern with.

The positive thing is li–what we just talked about, in bringing basketball alive internationally, and it’s only kept up that momentum now, and, what that team did with [Michael] Jordan and a lot of the players on that Dream Team has continued to do.

The negative part of it, I, that I still have some concerns about, is a lot of these players have now become, as they play together, it’s built friendships…A lot of these players now, I think, they’ll want to compete, and wanna get their, other players to be their friends, and not to have to compete against ‘em, but to compete together.*

And I think that t–mentality, I think, has hurt, to me, a little bit. I like people wanting to compete and be, liking to compete against one another instead of just, “Hey, let’s team up.” I think that weakens the league instead of strengthens it,** and so, I’m always happy to see when we have people stay with a com–a team, and go after another team.

* Rigby shared similar sentiments two summers ago about players getting friendly as a reason why he didn’t like [American] Jazz players playing for the national team.

** In his sales pitch at the end of the interview, Rigby said fans should buy tickets because “The competition in the NBA is as good as it’s ever been, if not great.”

Will the World Cup ever be as big as the NBA Finals?
I see the vision that David [Stern], that Adam [Silver] has, in, and what I think is magical about it in, and soccer has, is a great sport, but there is not the organization.

There’s a competitiveness between some of the top leagues in soccer, that actually serves to hurt each other. The NBA has done a masterful job of, I think, organizing basketball to come, to work together towards the culmination of the NBA. And I think that’s a wise plan.

I think you’ll continue to see, we’ve seen how the rules have actually started to get more and more in harmony with the NBA. And in some cases the NBA, we’ve made some concessions to bring it in harmony with the international community, so that, again, we can make it one common game. And I think you’ll continue to see that more.

Randy Rigby: Unintentional Dirty Quote Machine (UDQM)
** On leadership: I think that’s a very important part for our big guys.
** On Rudy Gobert’s French national teammates: They made good passes to him, and then he finished ‘em off.
** On competition: I think there’s something magical, to me, in life about having that kind of competitive desire, of liking to compete, and h–finding a good foe, but wanting to continue to, you know, compete against them and measure up how I’m doing and how they’re doing.
** On the World Cup: I think it’s going to continue to get bigger.
** On the Jazz’s Select-A-Seat open house: Having you two, you know that it’s gonna be big when we have The Big Show there. (1280)

Alec Burks, eating on a boat

September 4, 2014
tags: ,


Bits from Randy Rigby Interview, 8/27

August 29, 2014
tags: , ,

randy rigby

You signed Kevin Murphy today. Talk about that.
Well, you know what, we’re really, we’re rounding out our schedule. We’ve had some good looks with these players, from both our summer leagues, from previous experience, and we’re feeling very good about the addition of Kevin.

We added Brock Motum, came on as well, to our group, being maybe another one (audio skips) soon, and I think we’re getting to a place that (audio skips).

We’re gonna rock and roll here with this very exciting young team.

You’ve also brought in some new coaches. What can you tell us about that?
Well, you know, we’ve, one of the commitments we made to Quin [Snyder], as he came on with his coaching staff as, and we talked about it with Gail and Greg and Steve Miller, and that was our commitment to the coaching and to his coaching style.

And one of the things that is very important for Quin as a development coach is that he has the, a coaching staff around him that has his same philosophy and style, and that really can work and believes in working, not only in the video rooms and breaking down and looking and preparing, but also at the same time, then, can take what they’re seeing and bring those skillsets and that knowledge also onto the floor, and support the existing coaching staff in really working with these players.

And so, we’ve done that very thing in, with the addition of some additional coaches, who are some great additions for, really, our team.

What is “player development”?
Well, you know, it, particularly with the amount of young players that we have, I mean, we’ve got, now, 19-, 20-, 21-year-old players that are now stepping onto the dance floor of the NBA. And this is the best of the best, in all of basketball.

And we’ve got great young men who have a lotta talent, who have been playing for Kentucky, who have been well scouted out internationally, with a Dante Exum, who has great skillset.

But now they need to be mentored. They need to be taught. They need to be disciplined, and, of what it takes to take that skillset, and really develop it in an NBA-style game, and to understand and be taught what it means to be playing in this league, and to keep that mindset, throughout the whole season.

And it, that’s why it’s gonna take a number of people to really be behind that development and support, part of that support team. And that’s what it means in this development effort, and it takes a real commitment, and I appreciate the support we’ve had from the owners, from the Millers, to really see the wisdom and investing in the cost it takes to really, to put that money into the development of these players.

Having spent time with the national team, is Gordon Hayward a better player now? Do you expect him to be a better player now? Do you think he’ll be utilized better in Quin Snyder’s system than he was in Tyrone Corbin’s system?
I’d answer “yes” to all three of those questions. Let’s take ‘em one at a time.

Yes, I expect him to be better than he was in the past, and all indications that were, I’ve heard–I have not seen Gordon yet myself–but what I heard from Dennis [Lindsey] and from Quin in their reports, he looks much better…His body is growing up, and he’s no longer a young man, that he’s, really, more, he’s getting more of a man’s body, and he is physically and mentally, I think, in a better place. …

We’re excited about that. So I’m expecting to see that translate into better leadership, in better commitment. We’ve made a major commitment to Gordon, and we feel good about that commitment, and we’re looking forward to him feeling good about the commitment as well, and being a real leader and an example and one of our veteran players on this team.

And I think that’s, to your second question, one of the things that this experience has provided for him. He is playing now with, again, on a daily basis, that upper echelon of NBA-caliber player, and seeing what it takes to give it and to be competing with those guys day in and day out. And e–picking up maybe some of the other little tricks* and skillsets that maybe some of these other players are using, utilizing in their game.

Hopefully that’ll translate into him bringing it and being a better player and learning some additional things. And I know it’s gonna help him. It’s forced him into playing and being in basketball shape right now in the middle of the summer, so I think that’s going to benefit us. I’m happy that there was no injury with him, that he had a good experience, that I think that is gonna translate into being a better leader and a better player for the Utah Jazz.


A lot of Jazz fans don’t understand or care about the synergy between the NBA and the D-League. You’re all over this. Talk about what the Jazz’s relationship with the Stampede will be like.
Well, I’m excited about it. I, for example, Dennis and Justin [Zanik] and myself spent literally today, almost four hours, I think, really delving into the D-League and the, and our relationship to it, even at a greater extent, today. And I just say that to indicate the amount of time that we’re putting in to really being committed, and really maximizing this tool for the Utah Jazz.

I really, and you know, we’ve, I’ve seen [that the D-League is a] great tool for teams that immediately embrace it, and get on the cutting edge of it. And that’s who we want to be, is one of those cutting-edge teams who look at how they can take a D-League program, and how they can then utilize it to help make their team better, how they can help use tho–the D-League to make their decision-making better, and to understand, and analyze, players that are out there playing in the D-League, or players that are playing in their system, how they’re responding and performing to it.

And so, we’re really committed to really making this D-League an integral part of Jazz basketball.

Hopefully this means the years of the Jazz/Kevin O’Connor dicking around with the D-League are over.

Would the Jazz be willing to play games overseas?
It’s something that we’re going to be embracing because it’s something that’s going to happen. But I think it’ll be done in a very cautionary way, that we’ll do it kind of a step by step. But the commitment is already there.

We’re not on the docket for any international game, I know, this year or next year. But I know with us having international players, such like Enes [Kanter] coming from Turkey; now Rudy Gobert from France; adding players from Australia with Dante Exum, I’m sure we’re going to be, and as we become a real contender in the future, we’ll be one of those attractive teams that, internationally, that I’m sure we’ll be going over in some places.

Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines (UDQM)
The conversation was about Gordon Monson and Spencer Checketts switching positions with Dennis Lindsey and Randy Rigby.
** Rigby: I’d only hope that that switch isn’t done on a Wednesday of when [Lindsey]‘s gonna be, then, the host of The Big Show, on a Wednesday, for me coming on.
** Rigby: So Dennis and I are now, that’s scary to think, of Dennis and I doing The Big Show.
** Checketts: Now we’re getting into sticky territory. I’ll call Greg, see if we can change. (1280)

Bits from Mark Eaton Interview, 8/27

August 28, 2014
tags: ,


How are things?
Things are great. I’ve spent the last seven or eight years kinda building this business doing motivational speaking and corporate training, and it’s going very well. I’m speaking about 60 times a year right now. …

Did you ever experience nerves or anxiety?

Oh yeah. Always nervous. I mean, I’m not exactly the extrovert to begin with, and, so, to get up in front of a room of 300 people,* and, you know, it’s one thing to play basketball in front of them or talk on TV or the radio, but to actually deliver a message that they’re gonna listen to for an hour and actually take something away from was a little intimidating.

But I worked hard at it, and found the right people to help me and develop the message that really has impact and some good takeaways, and so it’s been going very well. But yeah, it was definitely, took me probably 200 times before I finally got over the anxiety.*


You were working as an auto mechanic when you were “discovered” to play basketball. Did you love the game of basketball?
Well, I didn’t as a young man. When I was in high school, I sat on the bench and, at Westminster High School, and didn’t play much, and honestly just thought that was the end of athletics and it was time to go do something else.

And went to trade school in Arizona for a year to be an auto mechanic–my father is a diesel mechanic–and then I was working in a tire store at Lincoln and Knott–they’re right down the street from Cypress College–and I’d been there about a year and a half when a junior college assistant coach came buzzing around the corner and saw me standing out there talking to this customer, and said, “Whoa, who is that big guy?”*

And he came in, and over a period of a couple of months, convinced me to go out on the basketball court with him for just about 30 minutes, and show me some things he could teach me. And he had some experience working with big men, and convinced me to give basketball one more shot.

So I went back to school at age 21, and spent two years at Cypress College, and, with him, and then two years at UCLA, which didn’t go very well. But eventually, we marketed ourselves to the Jazz and they gave us a shot.

Have you ever thought about what your life would be like if you hadn’t been outside the tire store that day?

Well, you know, I was perfectly happy doing what I was doing, and I’d probably own a tire store in northern California somewhere or something. That was my big dream, was like, maybe move north, get out of the big city. And so, I think I’d be fine, but it was rather annoying having everyone walk into the store and say, “You should play for the Lakers.”

* Is anyone else hearing “bow chicka wow wow” in their head? Just me? Fine, as you were.

It kind of seems like basketball was your destiny.
I always thought there was something else out there. I didn’t know what it was. And it wasn’t until all this, coach came along, that I said, “Well, maybe,” you know, “Maybe I’ll think about this one more time.”

And I got out there and gave it a chance, and then I decided, “All right, I’ll play this through. I’ll do the four years of college and just see where it goes.” And there were a lot of times I didn’t think it was going anywhere.

But yeah, it turned out well in the end, and thank goodness for Frank Layden, who came down and watched me play in southern California at summer league, and said, “You know what? We’ll give you a shot.”

How did you learn to be a defense and rebound guy when everybody probably wanted to throw you the ball in the low post?
Well, you have to remember what the, you know, the Jazz was like when I first showed up, with Adrian Dantley, who was scoring 35 points a game and was really the main cog of the offense. Then the Mailman [Karl Malone] came in, and so, you do what you’re good at.

I mean, you, everyone can’t score 20 points a night on, you know, in the, on the team. It’s, you got, there’s a give and take. And so, if you got the choice between giving me the ball or Karl Malone, I’m giving it to Karl Malone.

So, and [back then] we had the illegal defense rule, things like that, where the focus then was pull the center on offense away from the basket to pull his man up above, you know, the defensive player up above the free throw line to give Adrian Dantley or Karl Malone more opportunity to get down there. Well, didn’t leave a lot of scoring opportunities in the meantime.

And Frank Layden will still tell you, he laments about that once in awhile, he’s like, “Yeah, we should’ve gotten him more involved in the offense.” But, you know, I knew what my job was. I did it well…My biggest thrill in basketball was really blocking a shot, collecting the rebound, and throwing it up to Rickey Green or John Stockton and watching ‘em sail down the floor. I mean, my, I loved outlet passing and all that part of the game.

And then I really didn’t care if I scored or not, and, because I knew we, you know, we were covered in that area, and hey, if I got a, you know, got a hook shot in here or there, an offensive rebound, great. But I knew what, you know, where my bread was buttered, and that was, you know, Wilt Chamberlain taught me too in summer league, was park my rear end under the basket and stop players from getting there.

So you got tutelage from Wilt Chamberlain?
I did, yeah, and I use that in my presentation a lot, about focusing on the one thing you do well. You know, know your job. And, yeah, he grabbed me one day at the men’s gym at UCLA and said, “Dude, why are you running up and down the court all over the place?”

[He was] like, “C’mere.” You know, put me right in front of the basket, and said, “Stay here. This is your job. Your job is to stop players from getting there. You know, collect the rebound, throw it up to the guard, let them go down the other end and score,* and then kinda cruise up to halfcourt and see what’s going on.” And he redefined the center position for me, of what was important.

And it was like a light bulb went on, and I went, okay, I understand now how I can compete and succeed out here, rather than just being another guy running around trying to do everything. And so I just focused on that one thing, and that became the core, the center of what I did.

And then it fit well with the Jazz, because when it came with the Jazz, to the Jazz, Frank Layden was changing everything from that run and gun-style offense to one that ran on opportunity and used defense–everything was predicated on defense.

And we overplayed, we rotated, you kn–we took chances defensively with Rickey, and with Darrell Griffith and guys like that, to create opportunities for ourselves, and it became a style of basketball that has stayed with the Jazz for years and years and years, of that, you know, “Let’s play good defense first, and then run when we can.” And that worked well for me, because I got to be the center of that, at the defensive side to help make that happen. (KFAN)


Off-season Odds and Ends

August 27, 2014

One. The Jazz have signed a number of training camp invitees, marking the first time (in [my] memory, and without checking) that invitee signings have been announced this early in the summer, or even announced at all.

Signings so far include Dee Bost, Jack Cooley, Brock Motum and former Jazzman/Jazz-Stampede affiliation poster boy Kevin Murphy.

murphy re-sign

Two. The fashionista(s) among us have observed, noted, and watched for–with anticipation–Quin Snyder’s affinity for the “Deep V” neckline since his hiring (as seen here, and here).

As it turns out, Snyder may merely be carrying on the (heretofore unknown) tradition of the Jazz Deep V, with the originator being everyone’s favorite Moneyman, Memo Okur. IG posted by Jarron Collins of his son:

collins son

Burrowing into the archives, I found these pics (along with some truly awful and objectionable sartorial choices by Deron Williams, but we’ll save that for another day):

ak memo

#euro #toptwobuttonsdontexist #mashaissportingavtoo

Three. The size of Rudy Gobert’s feet continues to be a source of fascination for his NBA brethren:

rudy foot

Previously, we had Brandon Rush posting not once, but multiple times about the size of Rudy’s feet:

rudy rush 2

rudy rush 1

Four. Enes Kanter’s younger brother, Kerem Kanter, will be playing college ball for the University of Wisconsin – Green Bay (H/T @prodigal_punk and @5kl):

The Green Bay men’s basketball team will be adding Kerem Kanter to its roster beginning with the 2014-15 season, head coach Brian Wardle announced on Tuesday afternoon.

Kanter, a native of Istanbul, Turkey and brother of Utah Jazz forward Enes Kanter, played the 2013-14 season at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, where the 6-foot-9 left-handed forward averaged 17 points and nine rebounds while shooting 64 percent from the field.

“I decided to come to Green Bay because of their winning attitude,” Kanter said. “The program is about winning and improving their players. Another reason is the relationship I built with the coaching staff. They did an amazing job recruiting me, and I felt like this place is where I want to be. I know they won the Horizon League last year and had a great record. Coming to a team which has a chance to win their league again and go to a tournament and make some noise is a great opportunity.” …

“We are very excited to add Kerem Kanter to our program,” Wardle said. “To have a young man come over from Turkey and represent our program is exciting not only for Green Bay Basketball but also for our entire University. Kerem is a skilled forward that brings an ability to score from the inside and out. He has a great bloodline of basketball in his family, and we know he is extremely excited to get to Green Bay to pursue his dream of getting a college education and being a Division I player.”

Five. Carrick Felix is in Utah.

Bits from Dean Cooper Interview, 8/14

August 26, 2014
tags: ,

coopervia @idahostampede

Take us through the timeline of chatting with Dennis Lindsey and accepting the Idaho Stampede coaching job.
Well, I chatted with Dennis Lindsey 15 years ago…I was with Dennis eight years in Houston, so we’ve been, you know, very good friends, and, for a long time. So, I think our first, actually, my first conversation wasn’t with Dennis.

I, you know, [it was] with Justin Zanik, and going through that process–’cause Justin was gonna have, had the NBDL process–probably was, oh, I don’t know, a little over a month or so ago? Five weeks ago? And then, in contact with my agent and then going, getting set up for an interview and then interviewing with coach [Quin] Snyder, I guess three weeks or so ago?

And then got, I think it’s been about two weeks since we came to agreement on the job. So, it was a good process. Very timely.

Talk about what the Stampede’s exclusivity with the Jazz means to the team and to you as well.
Yeah, well, I think it’s great on a lotta levels for a lotta people and for a lotta reasons. …

I think for the people of Boise, it’s really a very positive thing because they’re gonna, I want them, like I said earlier today, you know, I want the people of Boise to be excited about the Idaho Stampede and the Utah Jazz, because, I, the players are gonna be coming back and forth.

We’re gonna play the same way that coach Snyder teams play. We’re gonna use the same terminology. We’re gonna make it as seamless as we can for our players.

And so, I want, it’s my job is, I’m kind of in a unique position, sort of coach Snyder’s assistant coach, and I’m the head coach of the Idaho Stampede, which is a great opportunity. And I think it’s great for the fans.

Is your top priority player development or winning games?
Well, I think we’re gon–you know, we’re gonna try to do both. We’re gonna, you know, our job is to develop our players, obviously. But inside of developing players is learning how to win.

And you know, I think the, my first and foremost task relative, I wanna create a culture, I, in standards and an environment, that has standards where we believe in work, and we believe in getting players better, and players believe in getting themselves better, and the winning in all that will be a by-product of the more detailed things that we’re doing.

What have you taken from working with coaches like Rudy Tomjanovich, Jeff Van Gundy and Kevin McHale?
I’ve taken a lot, not just a little, I’ve taken a lot from each of those guys…

I just had this conversation with Rudy a couple days ago, is, I can’t coach like any of them. I can’t be any of them. I have to be Dean Cooper and just use the tools that they’ve given me. But I gotta be me.

You will be marrying Quin Snyder’s philosophy, correct?
That’s right. You know, we’ve been in the think tank the last few days in Salt Lake, and you know, getting everything, you know, I gotta learn, you know, how, coach Snyder’s terminology, how his mind works, what he thinks is important, how he prioritizes things.

And obviously, I mean, there’s always, like, tweaks because you don’t have the exact same players that have the exact same skillsets. But the pillars of what we’re doing are gonna be the same. …

This is about the players, and we need to make it as seamless as possible for when they get allocated to us in Boise, getting ‘em ready to go back to Utah to be, to produce and be at their best. And the way to do that is to have clear, consistent messages, terminology, style of play, etc., etc. (1280)


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