Locker Room Cleanout, Part 3 (Favors, Burks, Hayward, and Evans)
** What was the message you got during your exit interview?: “Just keep improving.”
** On Al Jefferson: He been a pretty big help for my development, offensively, far as, like, footwork and just talking to me about how to play on the post, being patient, how to work on post moves, just little things like that.
** UDQM: [How do you feel about your left hand?] I’m very good left. I’m very good left. [How about your right?] I’m really good right too…I’m good either way.
** Offseason plans: I’m going back to Atlanta for a little while. Then I be back up in Salt Lake…Santa Barbara too, yeah. Love Santa Barbara.
** Will you watch the Playoffs? Nah, I’m not watching. I’m not watching. Usually I watch ’em every year, but this year I’m not watching. [Why?] Just the way our season went. You know, I don’t, I just don’t want to watch it…Taste of the Playoffs last year, then being out of it this year, you know, I don’t want to watch it.
** Was it tough not getting as many minutes as you wanted? Just something you gotta learn to live with. You know, everything not gon go your way all the time. Just gotta learn to live with it, continue to work hard, and you know, just wait for your opportunity.
** On the possibility of signing an extension: I don’t know. We just gotta wait and see. You know, it’s just something that the front office and my agent gotta go through, but you know, we’ll just wait and see.
** On seeking help from the coaches on his free throw shooting: I just walked over to one of the coaches and like, “Man, I need help with my free throws. You know, I been getting to the free throw line a lot, and I’m not making ’em.” So we just spent time in the gym before practice and after practice just working on technique, and just getting reps up.
** On seeking help on offense: I just went up to [one of the coaches] and told him what I was thinking, what’s the problem, or what I was thinking I needed to work on. And we did the same thing, just repetition, technique, watch film. You know, they gave me feedback on what they saw. I gave ’em my feedback on what I was seeing, what I was thinking, and what I think I need to improve on, and just working on that. And I kept improving. [What was the problem?] Basically, just angles really, you know, and just being patient on the post.
** How comfortable are you in Utah? I’m comfortable here. I like it. You know, kinda remind me of Georgia a little bit. You know, it’s kind of slow-paced, not too fast, you know, quiet. So you know, kinda remind me of Georgia, so I feel like I’m at home. [What about your mom?] I don’t think she wanna move out, but she likes it though. She like me being here.
Is it concerning that the Jazz coaches do not actively identify areas where players need help, and instead wait for players to come to them? Kevin O’Connor even said in February that Alec Burks only started working on his shooting with the coaches after he asked for permission to do so. Management (or the coaches) did not ask Burks to work with the coaches because they “wanted to see what Alec would do.”
** What were you happy with this season? I feel like I got to play multiple positions. Got to play the one a little bit, show people I can play the one at times. And I got better, you know, throughout the year.
** Do you feel like you could be a point guard in the NBA? I feel like I could be, if I needed to be, you know? If it came to that situation, I definitely could be one.
** What will you be working on in the offseason? Just my in-between game. You know, I pride myself on getting to the rim, but you know, I feel like my in-between game should get a lot better. And you know, definitely getting defensively a lot better, and getting stronger.
** Offseason plans: Go back home, you know, and enjoy my loved ones, you know, and get better.
** What was the message in your exit interview? “Get better.”
** Do you feel like the young guys are ready to step up? You know, I feel like we a very talented young core. You know, I feel like we ready for anything. If it happens, it happens, you know? But I think we are ready.
** Will you be playing in the summer league? We’ll see, you know? You might, you probably see me down there. I don’t know yet, but you know, most likely you probably see me down there.
** How good do you think you can be? I think I can be a All-Star, you know? I’m very confident in my abilities, you know? With my athletic ability and my talent, I feel like I can be a All-Star.
** What has been harder than you expected? The rotation. The playing time. I did not expect it to be like this, but you know, you gotta roll with it, you know? It’s the NBA. [Do you think it’s been fair or unfair?] I can’t speak on that. It ain’t my decision, you know?
Speaking of Alec Burks, Bill Simmons included him on his “Bill Simmons All-Stars for ‘The Guys I Inexplicably Like Much More Than I Should Probably Like Them'” team with the following description: “puzzlingly buried by the wildly incompetent Ty Corbin.”)
** Gordon Hayward, aspiring songwriter: You say goodbye for the summer, every year. It’s just, sometimes, it’s weird ’cause you never know if you’ll be saying “hi” again next fall.
** Offseason plans: Go back to Indianapolis, and continue to get better.
** On Al Jefferson: He’s been great. I mean, probably the best post player, you know, I’ve ever seen in person. And we leaned on him a lot, you know, especially he had that big, huge game to even keep us, keep the Playoff hopes alive.
** What will you be working on in the offseason? A little bit of everything. I think you can always be a better shooter. You can never be good enough, so that’s gonna be one. And you know, ball-handling, again. I think you can always be a better ball-handler as well. So those two things are gonna be key.
** How good can you be? I think I have potential to be an All-Star. And that’s a goal of mine. That’s what I’m gonna work towards.
** Are you ready to put your stamp on this team? I think so. You know, three years have come and gone, so it’s time to step up.
** Summer plans: Just to go into summer and working harder. Come back, try to get a little bulk here, put a little muscle on, and just, you know, come be active and just do what I do…I think I can get a lot stronger, but I’m not sure about how much bigger I can get. But far as stronger, I think you can always get stronger so Imma work for it.
** On what he’s done for his mom: I’ve asked her, you know, where she wants to stay, and just trying to get her out of Crosset just, you know, into a nicer home, but she loves home and I do too. And you know, I don’t blame her for that. And just went home and paid her house off, and hopefully summer she’ll know what she wants to do far as where she wants to live.
** What would you like to see for your role next year? Of course everybody wants to play, but I’m happy just, you know, to do whatever coach asks me to do. And hopefully, if that is getting in the game, and getting minutes and bringing energy, that’s what I’ll do. And whatever they ask for of me, I’m going, you know, into the summer hopefully to work hard and come back stronger, and you know, improve on my game.
** Was it frustrating to put in the work and not get minutes? Nah, not really. Just, you know, you put in the work and everybody doesn’t see the practice players. I go in and work hard and practice against some of the best guys in the NBA, so I feel like everyday I’m getting better.