Locker Room Cleanout, Part 2 (Mo, Tinsley, Watson)
** On his exit meeting: It was great. Both sides respected each other, and respected the job we both did. They commended me for a lot of great things I brought to the team. And we just, we said, “Hey, you know, the feeling is mutual on the return.”…And I told [Tyrone Corbin], I told Ty in the meeting, I said, “Listen, man. I feel like, I enjoyed playing for you, first off. And I commend you on the job you did with the team.”
** Why do you want to stay with the Jazz? Well, first off, I was drafted here, and this the organization that gave me a shot when I first came in the league as a young pup…Going into your 11th year, you know, you care about winning more than anything. And this team is big on winning. Not making the Playoffs is not a option, you know, and that’s what I like. I want to play in the post-season. You know, that’s where stars are born, and I would like to have that moment, be in that moment.
** Do you feel like you were able to showcase your point guard skills this year? I hope so, you know, ’cause the year before in, with L.A., I was off the ball the whole year, and that was my first time in my career where I didn’t handle the ball. It was extremely tough for me…One thing about me, I lock into a role. So I was really locked into that role, like, off the ball, scoring every time I touched it…I commend the Jazz for giving me oppotunity, putting me in the position to be able to show what I can do, and that’s being a scoring point guard. / Ty put me in the position to exploit my skills. You know, I’m just not a guy that’s just gonna come down and just be a point guard and you know, distribute every time down the floor. He know I have a scoring ability, and he put me in position.
** On spending the season with Al Jefferson: It was fun to play with him ’cause, you know, we always with each other in the summertime and hanging out and you know, doing stuff with our foundations together. And to really be around each other all year now, you know, our friendship has become closer.
**On Al mentoring the young guys: He was extremely vital for, especially, Turk [Enes Kanter] and Big Fav [Derrick Favors]. You know, helping them in they development. I mean, if you want to learn some, how to put the ball in the hole, that’s the person to go to.
** On whether he agrees with Tyrone Corbin saying free agency negatively impacted the team: No. It was nowhere negative. We always stayed the course, and you see it down the stretch, because if that was a factor, trust me, we wouldn’t have went on the run.
** On how he’s turned his career around: Only thing I axe people, is just to be up front with me, and don’t B.S. me, you know, ’cause at the end of the day, I’m gonna go out there and compete and play hard. And whatever you tell me to do, I’m gonna go out there and do it. And I don’t got no hidden agenda; I just want to help my teammates, the organization, and win ball games. And you know, that’s what I think I did this year…As you get older, you know, you separate yourself from being in certain situations that could lead up to something, and you know, as my son got older, you know, it reflect and he get to see what I do and what I do off the court and on the court. And I just didn’t want him to see me just as a basketball player. So you know, I just got smarter.
** On whether he agrees with Tyrone Corbin saying free agency negatively impacted the team: I don’t think so. You know, guys could’ve been selfish and looked for they own shot and not passed the ball. I didn’t see none of that. You know, we all like each other. We all played for each other. We played hard, and we did everything in the right way.
** Favorite part of the season: Just moment of seeing some of the young guys just grow as basketball players and knowing that, you know, things didn’t always go their way, and by me being a veteran point guard, been through a lot, and just letting them know, you know, just stay with it. You never know when your number’s gonna be called. Don’t sit over there and pout. You know, go get some shots up. You know, just be into it.
** Offseason plans: Just spend time with my son [in] Miami. You know, it’s his world in the summertime. You know, spend time with him and teach him certain things, and just be a father now. [How old is he?] He’s nine.
** Plans for next year: That ain’t up to me. You know, I would love to come back. You know, I don’t control that. You know, I let my agent and them talk, but you know, I will always have a heart for the Jazz. You know, they brought me back when I was in the D-League. You know, they trusted and believed in me, and I don’t have nothing bad to say about them.
** On his season: For me, it was challenging from a physical part. The surgeon said it’d be 12 months. It’s 12 months this week, so I’m starting to feel normal the last couple of weeks. And coach had to go with a lineup that was ready, and I wasn’t ready physically. But the type of player I am, I’m always fighting for my team whenever they need me. Mo went down, which kind of forced me into action. You know, I came back a little ahead of time, but I have all summer to get healthy completely.
** On the future: I’m a realist, and for me, a couple years from now, or maybe even over the summer or maybe a year or two from now, this team will not be together, obviously. You’re going to see players go to teams and have amazing runs throughout the post-season, if not win a championship. And you gon sit back and think how good this team could’ve been. We could never really capture our full potential.
** On Gordon Hayward: I’ve said this all along. Gordon is gonna be an All-Star. I said that from the first week he was here. He kinda reminds me of Jerry West, and I don’t even know why. You know, just being around Jerry since I was 17, he has the same mannerisms. Gordon is the type of player where, the media has to understand in the beginning of the season, he’s gonna start not where he left off. So he’s gonna start at 13, 15 points a game. By the end of the season, he’s gonna be around 20. And it’s only because Gordon is a type of player where he analyzes the entire team, and he figures out, he figure out ways to make his teammates better. He figure out how to be balanced within his play. And then, as his teammates get better from him, he gets better…Gordon’s gonna have some amazing post-season runs. He’s gonna be amazing in the post-season.